Enjoy high school while you can

Published 5:45 pm Friday, October 19, 2018

Although some days and weeks feel like they’ll never end, it’s amazing how fast years fly by. Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like just yesterday I was a shy high school student ready to walk across the graduation stage in West Blocton, Alabama, and get on with college.

But “just yesterday” has actually been 10 quick years, something my Facebook notifications are reminding me of every day right now. Although I won’t be able to attend, the West Blocton High School class of 2008 is celebrating its 10-year reunion this week, and there’s a big group on Facebook planning the reunion and working on the parade float. They’ll take part in the annual homecoming parade down Main Street and will be honored on the football field at Tiger Stadium Friday night. I watched that parade so many times as a student and always remember seeing the previous alumni from 40, 30, 20 and 10 years before walking along. And I always remember focusing on the older classes and not thinking much about the class from just one decade before.

After all, how much could things change in 10 years?

If I could give any advice to local high school seniors, it’d be to take mental snapshots of everything that happens from now until graduation day. It’s not that high school is the best time of your life, something many people say about high school and college. It’s just that things are different after high school. Once everyone starts picking colleges and planning what’s next, everything turns into a blur. 

The people you’ve spent the majority of the first 18 years of life with will go separate directions in a hurry. Many of my former classmates have families now or are working their way up through their career, and they live all over the country.

Over the last few months, I’ve covered homecomings at Lafayette Christian, Troup High and Callaway High, with a few more to come in the next few weeks. Homecoming games are always special nights, especially when the homecoming queen (and sometimes king) are crowned at halftime. The football game seems to matter more, and most of the time schools see their biggest crowd of the year during homecoming week.

A year from now those students will be in college or working full-time jobs, a big change after spending years with a lot of the same faces in a school building.

High school can only last so long, and it goes by quickly. My advice is to enjoy it while it lasts.