Say Yes to Stress

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Say Yes to Stress

Grace Kosner, Video Editor

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When I was eight, I faced my fear of the ocean and attempted to dive into a 10-foot wave. With intense fervor, I pointed the tips of my fingers up to the sky and then dipped down as I curved my back for a perfectly formed dive. Immediately upon hitting the water, I lost control. The wave’s strength pulled me as sand and unknown sea objects hit me in all directions. I could not differentiate up from down and I felt belittled by the ocean’s powers. I was no longer a human but a spider being sucked into a flushing toilet: my hands and feet whaling in all directions proven ineffective.

        This memory has haunted me as a first semester senior because it mirrors the stresses I have faced. No one quite prepares you for senior year. You go into it thinking that you will define the norm. The stories of 10 hours of sleep in a week and intense anxiety seem exaggerated because everyone manages to complete the year. But this mindset is very wrong. Senior year took me in as the wave I encountered—stripping me of my dignity, suffocating me by its overwhelming force.

        If you are experiencing what I have experienced, let me offer you some solace: the burden of teenage angst mixed with high school stresses is the perfect excuse to get out of certain situations. This time in our lives happens to be one that adults look back on and cringe. With our brains still forming, we are often confused and unable to decipher rights from wrongs. We sometimes make bad decisions, procrastinate and give into social pressures but every adult identifies with some of this. For this reason, go ahead and have an emotional panic attack in front of your parents because it is likely that they will cut you some slack on cleaning your room by the end of the night. I even got my mom to let me take off a couple “mental health days.”

        There is no denying that first semester senior year is pretty brutal but since this is so apparent, the excuse is believable. As an underclassman, the workload was not nearly as abundant so the mental health days were unnecessary and parents recognized this. Going through the first semester of senior year is inevitable but the blessing in disguise is the beauty of the perfect justification for getting a little sympathy.