High School: Four Years of Midlife Crises

As the semester ends, and we finally begin to adjust to practically living at school, we all at some point must have assessed our surroundings to try, on some level, to grasp how childish or grown-up we are as a whole. Like maintaining an A through finals week, it’s relatively impossible, and not just because we’re already stressed about some other class. As a group, we can’t identify as adult or child. We’re too old to be kids, and too young to be adults. Just walking through the halls, I’ve seen and heard the actions of seventh graders, which in itself is astounding.

To be able to laugh and live as we’re expected to as teenagers is a true privilege and almost expected from students, because not everyone can. But juxtaposed with this youthfulness is the assumption that we’re also supposed to accept incredible responsibilities, cope with harsh criticism, and not complain while doing it. Many Fenwick Friars then, to maintain both images, often develop multiple personalities; I’ve witnessed the biggest changes from rowdiness in the halls to utter stillness in the classroom. I’ve seen kids change from blasting music during passing periods to analyzing poetry with astounding connections, then pushing friends into lockers the second the class ends.

The change is instantaneous, and beautiful. Only in witnessing the transformation can one truly understand teenagers as an identity. It’s a fleeting second, but it’s the moment when we can be the most like ourselves: adult and child, mature and childish. We’re walking paradoxes, and as in every paradox, we bear a hidden truth, as a generation: we’re living, breathing examples of the best years of our lives.