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A Case for NOT Rushing Out of High School
Phoenix Chu
3 Oct 2002

I was just walking out of my class at a local community college, and it suddenly hit me. In a few short months, high school will be over. That does not sound like much does it?

I had always thought of myself as just a kid messing around wondering what she will do when she grows up. But as I walked from the lab and looked behind at most of the people in that class with me who were older and in their twenties trying to balance work while trying to get more education. I saw a glimpse of what could me in the not-so-distant future.

I had processed the fact that I am a senior in high school. I recognize that I am one of those people on campus freshmen think look old and scary. I know that there are a pile of applications sitting on the corner of my desk that may as well be arbitrarily deciding where I will spend the next four years of my life. I know I will be moving out and living on my own soon. I accept the fact my workload will continue to grow, grow, and grow.

The fact that I will not longer be a high school kid messing around and 'when I grow up' is coming around the corner sooner then I expected is a little harder to absorb.

We know we complain about the superficiality of high school. We complain about how people pretend to have problems. We complain about the busy work. We complain about not being able to control enough of our own lives. We complain about how high school people are the same. We complain about how boring it is.

But you know what, is it not it great that we do not have enough to ponder about that people are superficial? I mean is not it great that we really do not have that many problems?

Think about it guys, we are all on some levels, alike. We all get up and go to school about the same time in the morning. We have similar course loads, similar schedules, and similar lives. Most of us eat at the same local burger places. Many of us debate about who makes the best coffee in the area. Most of us have been together for years. We are all worried about college and what is going to happen after high school. We all graduate together on the same level. We are probably all headed off to some classroom somewhere. We are all so much alike.

And that bothers us. It is so boring. But when else in our lives are you going to be so many people that probably feel the way you do? When else are our lives going to be so simple?

I, like many high school students, was bored. So packed my bags for a summer and went off to a university on the east to attend classes and for a change of scenery. I got more than I bargained for. In that two-month period I encountered too much free time, a lot of 'non-busy' work, too many different people, too much control of my life, issues of race and justice, people who weren't faking problems, class disparities, money issues, and too much of anything but boring.

I had to search for people who were the same as me, who were on my level. And if I had to deal with so many problems in just a small college setting in a quaint New England town, can you imagine how many things we would be dealing with in a big college, in different city, or in a job?

Here everyone is one way or another on the same level. In college and in the world, you will find that people who are similar are hard to come by. The do not attend the same division of your college. They have a pre-professional emphasis and you have no clue on what you want to do. They grew up differently. They are not your culture.

There is a certain beautiful simplicity to that we are all growing up here the same together. There's a beautiful simplicity to how boring it is.

Although I am looking forward to getting out of high school and going out there to a different world, I will savor the last moments being here, being a kid. I will savor the superficial gossip and non-problems. I'll enjoy the last frivolous times of teenagerdom.

So I urge my fellow seniors of 2003 and high school students enjoy the moment while you can. Don't grow up too fast. Take that last time to really be a kid. After all, when are we ever going to get a chance to live like that again?

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