Don’t Leave Your Past Behind
Nicolette Weinbaum, Staff Writer
May 25, 2012 • 19 views
Filed under Opinions
Note to self: things I’m not going to miss about Westport …
Chartwells cafeteria food. Eight classes a day. Taking those oh-so-boring required courses. Waking up at6:30so I can skip the traffic. Having amidnightcurfew, and that anxiety I get on my way to school over finding a parking space (thanks, juniors).
So I’ve finished my list with a sense of satisfaction. In just a few months, I’m going to put on my “big girl pants” and go off to college. If you’re like me, and I know you are, you’re totally ready to blow this popsicle stand and march off to higher education. That’s right, move forward, and don’t look back. Cut all ties and embrace the future that lies ahead.
Sigh. If only it were that simple. No matter how much you and I deny it, you know it’s true. You’re going to miss this place.
This is how I see it. As mom sheds a tear waving me off to my ungodly-expensive education. (Is she crying because she’ll miss me, or because of the check she’ll have to write?), I fake an eye roll and pretend that I’ll be okay.
But when mom’s not looking, I choke back a sob.
Prediction: you’ll be on the phone with your mom 12 times a day those first two months.
You’ll be asking her what she made for dinner last night, what trouble your little brother has gotten in to, and asking her for news of the most arcane variety.
You’re going to miss that bedroom that you grew up in. Where your Spice Girls poster morphed into the Jonas Brothers, which turned into Justin Bieber, which finally morphed into Dave Matthews.
Think of your former sleeping quarters as a time capsule that you’ll occasionally return back to on breaks and holidays. It’s a place where you’ll reacquaint yourself with the stuffed animals that were tucked underneath your bed.
While we’re at it, let’s give a shout out to the high school friends that stuck by our sides through thick and thin.
Understandably, we promise each other on graduation that we’ll promise to our high school friends that we will remain B.F.F.’s for life (that may be redundant, but it’s true).
Forget all the future friends you’ll make in college, graduate school or the real world; the friends you grew up with in high school are the ones who will stay with you for a life time. After all, those were your first official Facebook friends, remember. (Hint: Cut this column out and put it in a safe place, pull it out 20 years from now, and you’ll see that I was right about this. Guaranteed).
The thing I think I’ll miss the most? My good old alma mater. Nationally recognized as one of the most accomplished and competitive schools in the country, I’ll admit, there were times (such as finals week), when I wished I were anything but a Wrecker.
But just the other day, as I drove up to school, I stared in awe at the sheer architectural beauty of the place I’ve spent the last four years. The clock is every bit as grand as the one in the middle of Grand Central Station. That day, I saw my school with a newfound appreciation. It hit me like a big yellow school bus.
All the sporting events that thrilled us, the state championships (the ones we won, and the ones we nearly won) will always be with us.
The faculty has been world-class, and has given us knowledge that not only prepared us for our college career, but also shaped us and our intellectual thought for years to come.
As you read this, I’m sure certain teachers come to mind, that you know had an amazing impact on you, and helped make who you are today and who you may be in the future.
After all that I’ve seen making my way through Staples, there is one enigmatic, indelible image that will stay with me for the years to come, an image that has resonated in you as well. Can you guess what it is…?
It’s Principal Dodig. Picture him as we know him best: standing at the entrance of the school every morning, greeting each one of us warmly as we file in for a new day of education.
More than anything else, this image symbolizes the totality of our common experience as students—and soon to be graduates—ofStaplesHigh SchoolinWestport,Conn.
We will miss all of these things, but we can take comfort in knowing that not only will we have these collective memories that link us together as classmates, but we can stand back and appreciate the essence of all of these things being a part of who we are. And what we will become.
By the way, to all of my classmates whom I’ve grown up with, I’ll never forget all the times we’ve had together. Thanks for the memories.