The golden-colored numbers hanging on the railing above Parker Hall flickers in front of my eyes, reminding me of the number of days until my graduation.
The number takes me back to the time when this moment was all a future to be awaited. A time when I was intimidated by the horrifying stress resulting from the insurmountable amount of work that seniors, now college freshmen, bemoaned as they walked through the corridors.
Personally, coming from a very frustrating junior year, I expected the senior year to be even more difficult. Given the extra amount of work and energy required for college applications, SAT, and general academics, everything about senior year seemed intimidating.
Furthermore, I had no idea about where I was going to send my college applications, if I was going to send any in the first place. After all the things I had to do in the 2018-19 academic year, my major remained undecided, making my choices uncertain.
However, starting from the second semester, all my classmates and I were treated to the generous services of our school’s college counselors in the Junior Seminar class. Making sense of what I could, I tried my best to complete the tasks set out by my counselor, though I was secretly aware that I might have to redo it all if I changed my major in the future, which I did.
With almost nothing working out the way I wanted, I decided to charge on with whatever was left of my junior year. With my head down towards the summer, I set my track on finalizing some major decisions.
Over the break though, my first priority was to relax and take things easy, and this time around I had the Fifa World Cup in Russia to keep things interesting.
However, my previous mistakes and from what I had heard about the coming year made me feel obliged to plan my future. I decided to set myself goals regarding my academics and college admissions before I jumped onto some studying for the subsequent year’s courses. A few weeks later, despite the rest I got, I trembled across the threshold and into the final year. That is just the way things are for a new senior.
As always, it took a while to get back into the routine. The first two to three weeks were stressful when every teacher was entering the very first grades, however, soon I got back into the swing of waking up early, going to classes, getting back to homework, and writing college applications. Before I knew it, there it was, Activity Week, and yet another trimester had passed. I was very surprised with the progress I had made in achieving academic goals I had set for myself in the midst of all the workload.
After my ninth and final activity week, as I spent the quarter break recovering from the annual mid-October flu, I reflected on how I got through the first trimester without any major problems. Without much thought, I realized that the goals I had set for myself over the summer break gave me a rope to hang on to above the deep mess of the senior year dumped with anxieties and endless commitments. Therefore, I decided to build on the momentum and set further goals for the coming trimester.
Consequently, the second trimester was much more successful in terms of college search and academics. I did not have to drag myself as much as a couple of months before, as I had most of the things either figured out or planned.
It was never easy to forget the amount of work that was put into all the things that had to be done, which were much greater in number as compared to any of the previous years. Late nights studying for SAT, taking time out for college search, and then the overall academics were exhausting. Never have I ever in my life, came across such pressure and pain which in the end, paid off.
Now, here I am with a little more than 70 days to go, with a good number of college offers from the college of my preferences, and some great work habits I have developed over the past year.
What could possibly go wrong now?
Abdul Malik Ansari is a Staff Reporter of The Woodstocker
Edited by Victoria Lee