Welcome to East Texas. The weather is insane, and everyone who goes to college goes less than 5 hours away, with few, lucky exceptions. Senioritis runs rampant this time of year, infecting even the underclassmen, leaving them squirming out of their gum-ridden desks, hopeful for the next few years to pass quickly. (In my journalistic verity, I ought to let you know that my class has approximately 820 days left until graduation.)
A very good friend of mine, the Jordan Maddox, recently published an article in the Henderson newspaper. It is an excellent read and incredibly worthwhile for every high school student, parent, educator or administrator, but it points out many difficult truths about the last year of high school. As of now, seniors are fairly unafraid to graduate from the tiled halls of Henderson High School.
The closest that I have witnessed a student come to fear of graduation is “cold feet” as Maddox so eloquently put it. Seniors find themselves accepted into a university and become increasingly concerned about the choice they made. The fear that they might have made the wrong choice for their future is a common one, but it still focuses on the future, rather than the present. They are not inherently afraid of leaving; they fear the path they have chosen.
Most seniors, at least this year, find themselves more terrified not to graduate than anything else. They itch to get out of good old Henderson, Texas and into new lives as far away as they or their parents are willing to pay for. Should grades, finances or any other conceivable circumstance go awry, those dreams of escapes and blank slates will be dashed on the red dirt ground, and as far as I have heard, no one wants to be stuck here in the land of crepe myrtles and mosquitoes.
Through my conversations with senior friends and close observation of the practices of those infected with Senioritis, I have come to the conclusion that the generations of children-turned-adults fearing to fall from the nest are coming to a close. In their place, sit significantly less timid, prepared young men and women, who are ready to take on the world. Their bags are packed. Their wings are spread. They are jumping out of the obscenely humid and uncomfortable nest. Congratulations to the Class of 2018: the students who are not afraid to fly.