Adriana Sanchez, Digital Managing Editor

  This is it. Junior year held all the tears, laughs and loving moments with the ones we love. Memories are forgotten like wisps in the wind, held back by a false sense of defiance. We come to learn, that is the seemingly inconsequential events of our lives that truly end up defining our past and leading us to this present moment, to right here, right now. Because that’s all that matters. So don’t fear the moment. Own it. Don’t be afraid to control it. Because if all we have is right now, then you better get going and don’t look back. I always tend to look back into the past and dwell on all the mistakes I’ve made. If I can’t change the past why stress about it? You learn from your mistakes and move on from them.

   “What I learned this year, is to be yourself and don’t get behind in your work and don’t procrastinate,” said Jialyn McKenzie, class of 2020

  Good things come to those who chase. It’s okay to be afraid of what lies at the end of life’s great endeavors. Even though some things never change, some things can change you forever. This year I dealt with the pain of heartbreak, anxiety attacks, depression and lack of self confidence, but I won’t let that shape who I am. I’ve learned a lot this year from my mistakes. Not everyone will stay in your life, but it’s what they left behind that stays with you forever, the laughs and the memories.

  There’s a lot you’re wrong about. A lot you don’t fully understand yet, and that’s okay. What matters more than being right is your willingness to learn. Work everyday to develop an open mind. Those with narrowed thinking will only ever experience within the tunnel they’ve closed themselves. Those open to change and difference will experience life.

  And if life begins to feel stagnant, look around. Appreciate the now that you are in. Give yourself a break. In the end, your life will not be defined by the days spent working or worrying. You will find yourself reminiscing on instances that gave meaning to your life, so collect these moments. The memories etched into your mind, the nights you knew exactly what it felt like to be alive.

  The meaning of life is the meaning you create for yourself, so spend your time with people who mean well and do the things that mean the most. Remember you are young and age gracefully. All the kids want to be adults until they become adults. So remember to be the kid you are, remember to enjoy the process. Don’t overload yourself.  Know as much as you need to right now, and you are still growing. You are still learning. Take the time to be youthful.

  The world will try to make you feel old, as if you are running out of time. But remember, the world doesn’t die when you do. It was here before you came and it will be here after you leave, so take full advantage of the time you have while you are here. You are not ahead of or behind anyone. You are exactly where you need to be. Observe others on their paths, watch them grow, and cheer for them, but do not compare yourself. A life lived in comparison is a life half-lived, so live entirely. And  if there’s a heaven, give them a show. Let them find themselves enamoured by the path you’ve chosen to follow, show them what it means to be alive.

This is the victory lap. This moment, this is the gift, and you’ll never get it back, so pat yourself on the back, pick yourself up off the ground, and realize you are more than you know.  I believe that everything happens for a reason and that you will find your place in life. It may take a while, but you’ll get there.  Enjoy the little things, this is my last summer of highschool, I’m going to make the most of it and have a great year. Thank you spending this moment with me. This was as enjoyable for me as it was for you.