The Four Year Challenge
You can try to imagine, dream, envision and possibly predict what life will be like for the next four years, but nothing can prepare you for you what you are about to experience as you enter the halls of high school. The outside structure of the building is appealing and the teachers inside seem friendly, but it is a total blur as you walk your way to your first class.
You quickly realize that high school has its own Ten Commandments, which seem to have been created by the students themselves. Being female and freshmen you automatically are at a disadvantage to all the other students. You are looked at, labeled and tagged, and most likely, given a reputation upon entrance. A very good friend of mine is a perfect example of this. Before even stepping foot into school, she was labeled because of her looks.
She is a beautiful girl and because of this, she was going into high school knowing that groups of girls were already against her. She never did anything or said anything to most of them, but it did not really matter. They did not know if she was smart or kind, athletic or talented. She had no value to them because she was too pretty. It made me sad to think that people can be so shallow, but knew that my friend would change their minds.
My friend was able to show these girls that she was not a threat, and by joining the same clubs and playing together in the same sport, they realized she had more to offer them if they did not see her as one. She is now very friendly with these girls, and is accepted and very well liked. I believe, that a positive attitude and self-confidence is more visible to people then we think. We have the ability to change the minds of those who only see how we appear on the outside and never bother to consider who we are on the inside. This is a major problem in high school and it is not easy to understand or overcome.
Teenagers also seem like they have to prove themselves to people they might have never met, and who probably do not even know their name. Your life is splashed on someone’s computer, cell phone, and of course Facebook, whether you want it to or not. You can read rumors on walls, view hundreds of you-tube videos, and try to understand blogs, all with a click of a button. Words are hardly spoken, feelings rarely expressed, yet every one claims to know you. As much as you try to keep your personal life private, somehow, someone manages to find out and it soon becomes public knowledge.
People do not realize that words are twisted and false information is given out, and before you know it, lies and rumors are being spread across kid’s computer screens. Drama is a universal word in the teenage world. You can have girl drama, boy drama, school drama, parent drama or just about any drama. There are clicks, groups, and flavors of the month. There is peer pressure, academic pressure, sex pressure and community pressure. We are at times overwhelmed and overbooked.
We are encouraged to excel in school, join clubs, play a sport, have outside interests and volunteer in our community. We are constantly being warned about the effects of drugs, alcohol, sex, terrorism, war and now the economy. Who would have thought teenagers were so smart. As I said, we created the Commandments. We are using our high school ‘drama’ to help build character and self- confidence. The struggles and challenges that we deal with everyday will ultimately make us stronger.
The negative comments, broken friendships, and peer pressure are experiences that are all part of growing up. The use of all the technology available to us can be very annoying now, but it is building skills that will benefit us in the future. Twenty years from now, the halls inside my high school will be filled with unfamiliar faces, but the rules will remain the same, the drama will not end, and the good times will continue.