Focusing on the ‘downs’ of high school will only cause you to miss the ‘ups’

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Jacey Piacenza, Staff Writer

As I am getting ready to leave Greeley West I have noticed that I have a love hate relationship with this place. 

I started out my freshmen year so excited to be here. I had heard good stories from all of my siblings. I soon realized that high school was going to be a roller coaster: constant ups and downs. My problem was that I found myself always looking at the downs. In my freshman year, I became a sexual assault victim. It is all I focused on for the whole year and I let it control my life. But now looking back on it, there were good things about that year too. I started to become myself. I made friends. I fell in love. All these good things happened to me and yet I couldn’t see it at the time and didn’t enjoy it.  Don’t dwell on things, in a few years it won’t matter anyway. 

In my sophomore year, I thought things were just as bad. This is when the rumors started. If you even know the slightest bit about me, you would know that none of them are true. People in high school tend to not get to know someone before they go spreading lies. This seemed to be happening all year to me. I lost some friends because of it, too. But good things also came out of this year. I started to find my love for not just one sport, but all of them. I pushed the boundaries that people set for me and worked hard not just in school but outside of it too. Don’t let people control who you are. You are more than what people say or think about you. 

Then came our junior year. All I can think back on is Covid and how everything got cancelled. Looking back, not that much was actually cancelled. I still got to play two out of the four sports I played that year. I lettered for my first time in football and lettered in a sport that I never thought I would do: diving. Once Covid hit, I focused a lot more on soccer and played almost every day with friends.  This is the year I also realized who my real friends were;.the ones who are going to set me straight and keep me on the right path and tell me when I am doing wrong. They were there when I needed them the most and I will forever be grateful for what they have done for me. Don’t forget who your real friends are through times of struggle. 

Finally, I reached my senior year. This is probably the year that I focused on all the downs. I felt so lonely. The rumors got bad. I put myself into a bubble with someone I thought I was safe with and thought would never hurt me. That didn’t happen either. The people I surrounded myself with this year were the ones who made me feel like I was nothing. They made me hate high school and want to leave so quick.   It wasn’t until these last two weeks of school that I realized all these years, I was making it bad for myself. I shut people out for no reason. I listened to people and let their words hurt me. I now know, as I head into college. that I’m not going to let that stop me from succeeding and having a good time. Don’t close yourself off to the world. You never know what you are actually missing. 

You have probably heard your entire life the saying “Learn from others mistakes”. I wish I had done that. But I found out that I don’t think that is possible. You are going to learn from your own experiences. All I’m trying to tell you is that high school is full of ups and downs, but if you focus on the downs you are going to miss everything the ups have to offer.