I don’t know about you, but high school was not the high point of my life. Just my bangs.
I had some great friends and fun times (hours and hours spent on homecomings and proms, hours and hours in the newspaper office, hours and hours spent “studying”) mixed in with your average teenage drama (“I have nothing to wear” and “You don’t understand” were commonly heard at my home) and then a heavy dose of above-average drama (because what’s the fun in being just “average”?). It was high school, and it was all new to me and my family.
My parents never had Homecoming, Turnabout or Prom. I didn’t know how to explain to my parents why having toilet paper strewn all over the house after making the poms squad was a good thing. I didn’t know how to explain to my parents the difference between “going out” and “going out”, and I certainly didn’t know how to explain to them that a great group of friends and a stellar transcript couldn’t undo the angst of high school life (at least until I was out of high school).
So watching my daughter get ready and then leave this morning (please tell me why starting high school at 7:30 a.m. is a good idea?) for her first day of high school was bittersweet and breathtaking. She simultaneously texted and Skyped and primped, and then it was time for a few embarrassing photos, a brief embarrassing video and a too brief hug and kiss.
A few days ago I had a great conversation in the car with my daughter and her friends. They were talking about their schedules and lockers and getting lost and one of them asked me, “Were you popular in high school?”
“Well, I knew a lot of people and a lot of people knew me, but I wouldn’t say I was popular,” I answered.
“Were you as pretty as you are now?” (And I swear she used the word “pretty” and that I didn’t pay her.)
“No. At least, I didn’t think so then. I know better now, and I hope all of you do as well.”
Apparently high school girls then and now are worried about similar things.
She’ll be home in just a few hours, but I’m sitting here in the back-to-school silence wanting to fill it so I’ll invite you all to chime in with your own words of wisdom, advice, humor, etc. for my daughter and her friends.
If you could tell her and the rest of the Class of 2014 a piece of your mind and heart, what would it be??