Why does it have to be like this? Why now? Just why.
Of all the times history has to repeat, it chooses the 1430s. Just great. And here I thought 2020 would have been better. I know things don't automatically change when the ball drops on New Years, but 2020 had so much promise. I was in the class of 2020 ever since I started kindergarten in 2007. With every passing year I looked more and more forward to that year, my year, the year I would get to do everything I could before I would become an official adult, and it's gone. I know countless others are going through such similar things, and so many more are going through so much worse, but these are some of the things that I, a high school senior, am so affected by that being one year older could have fixed.
1. I can't get free schooling ever again
I was halfway through so many classes that won't ever come free. Piano class, band class, and core classes that I genuinely found fun come at a price. It could be my last chance to ever play a tenor saxophone (I rent from the school) and all of my concerts I worked for are canceled. I'm not rich, and neither are my parents. My childhood is being cut short.
2. Senior trips
The oldest kids in the school get some privileges, like being the first picks when it comes to trips. After all, it's not like they can try again next year. I signed up for two trips: one to go to Germany with the German classes and one to go to Disneyland with the band.
I've been in German class all four years of high school, learning some German language and culture. I wanted to go to Germany so badly that when the teacher talked about the trip, my sophomore self immediately signed up for it. It was a six-week trip that our school goes on every other year, so when I got rejected for space reasons, I looked forward to my chance for the trip all the two years to follow. My teachers and the now seniors all ranted and raved about how great it was throughout my junior year, building and building excitement. Senior year finally comes. I go to the meetings. I fundraise. I look forward to the great times that await me on my first trip to Europe. I even listen to my parents, who agreed to the trip, complain about expenses every time a new payment was due. It was less than half a year away when it was canceled. Junior's were promised the ability to go next year to compensate, but seniors couldn't get the same deal. Instead, we got a fancy German-themed dinner with our German teachers. It was incredible! We all knew it wouldn't be the same as Germany, but at least we got this. Just us Seniors. The only problem was that it never happened either. Our pity dinner was canceled. My german dream killed, but that's not all.
I also signed up for a trip to Disneyland with the band program. We would spend a week in California, play a concert in the park, and even visit Knott's Berry Farm. My parents paid $1,000 for the trip, and I even spent $100 of my own money for a customizable droid (I don't have a job so that was basically all of my money). A week, one week, before our trip was supposed to start it too gets canceled. No pity dinner this time, just getting back a fraction of the money paid because of non-refundable down payment. What fun.
3. Prom was canceled
And graduation parties too. Yay… there goes my once in a lifetime opportunities...
4. My graduation was just a phone call
Who needs a ceremony. It's not like I spent 13 years of my life at school to get to this moment or anything. Watching all of my older siblings graduations didn't make me look forward to it. Being forced to attend the assembly where seniors rehearse their speeches and walks every year of high school would never make me long for the day I'd sit there. I never wanted to give a valedictorian speech. Never. Good thing now I'll never get the chance.
5. I can't give a good goodbye
I loved school and loved my teachers. I only got a yearbook in my freshman year, so I had big plans to get one senior year and have every teacher I had in all my four years to sign it, and I would thank them for being the best teachers I could wish for. What am I supposed to do now? Email them? Get a bunch of addresses and mail them a piece of paper to sign and wait for it to be mailed back, then mail it to the next teacher? I miss them all so much, Google meets calls can't do it justice. Most of them I'll never see again because I'm officially graduated and out of their class. My last words to them were probably "see you after spring break." I thought I would see them again. They were basically my only friends and now I can't even get face to face and tell them how great they are, or how much I looked up to each and every one of them. Students can be so mean to teachers and yet they're their anyway, getting lousy pay just so that people like me can learn. Education is so valuable, and I could have never learned anything without them. They were almost as big of an inspiration to get a 4.0 as my own parents. I wanted to give a speech about how amazing they are, and how much they mean to me at graduation, but everything fell apart.
Yes, people are dying, so what right do I have to care about such petty things? I should get over it and be happy that at least I'm healthy. My 18th birthday will be in quarantine, but so what? It shouldn't matter that I'm in the one age group that doesn't get any money from the US government because I'm almost an adult but not quite. There's nothing I can do about it but sit at home and go to school anyway despite the fact I graduated because AP classes don't finish themselves and I waisted a whole year already anyway.
After all, some say that graduating from high school isn't an accomplishment because it's what's expected of us, so I shouldn't be disappointed.
Who knows, maybe the year I'm supposed to graduate college is the year zombies are made real. That would at least be better than this because who needs to be excited about things anymore. Everyone's right: life sucks and being an adult is constant misery that you just have to put up with until you die.
Thank you 2020, you've made us senior's first time as adults really something.