STAFF EDITORIAL: It’s OK that high school isn’t the ‘best four years’

High school has always been an intangible dream from teenage movies; a place of shining varsity jackets, picture-perfect love stories and Friday night football games. Our parents tell us stories of their nostalgic four years, reminiscing on old friendships and memories. On the first day of freshman year, we expected to star in our very own “High School Musical,” only to immediately be snapped back  to reality.

While high school has given many of us great friends and unforgettable memories, anyone who thought it was going to be the best four years of our lives was mistaken. Young people expect a life-changing experience but instead find themselves fruitlessly failing to manage hefty work loads, complicated friendships, overwhelming sports commitments and the looming weight of college in the not-so-distant future. So why does society make high school out to be so pivotal?

High school is simply a stepping stone into the real world.We can appreciate the experience while we live it, but it is not the peak of our lives. Whether you have a great high school experience or a poor one, it’s important to recognize that it is only a sliver of your life. 

Contrary to what college admissions brochures attempt to make us believe, we don’t have to have our whole lives figured out by 17. We have decades ahead of us that will be filled with memories, accomplishments and new relationships, so there’s no need to put pressure on teenagers to make high school the absolute best four years of their lives. In fact, we hope that the best years of our lives are still ahead of us.