by Jennifer Bowman
By the time you read this article, I will have ended my school year as an eleventh grader, and officially be something I never thought I'd be: a seventeen year-old senior on her way to adulthood.
This past year was fairly good. In my opinion, being sixteen was much better than being fifteen. Having a license really changes things for you, and having a car makes all those things come into place.
However, the less you rely on your parents, and the more freedom you gain as you race towards independence (sometimes literally), the scarier the responsibility becomes, in any aspect of life.
Also, this year has led to the end of the ride known as puberty. I'll have to accept that five feet and four and a half inches is as tall as I'll ever be. I can no longer sleep twelve or more hours a day; I now find myself seeing the dreadful hour of 9:00 AM - on weekends! My skin isn't oily, and everything that seemed so bizarre with my body at first now seems mundane, normal, and even bothersome. My body has accustomed to being a "grown-up".
I can't quite say the same for the rest of me. I still have not been employed, mostly thanks to living in a town with two major colleges, with an honorable mention to two AP classes and general laziness. This summer, though, that is changing.
I am going to be staying with my grandmother (my dad's mother) and working for her. My summer is being given up for the good of my safety - it's likely that my parents would kill me if I were to stay in Tallahassee, lounging around, doing nothing for three months.
This was also the first year that I had to go through seeing some of my close friends graduate. Three of my friends graduated a year early, and it's really hard to picture them going to college and doing something that seems so far away in my mind, even though they are all the same age as me.
I really think that sometimes teens are not given enough credit for motivation and drive. I wish I could say that I myself am simply full of incentive, but that would simply not be true. However, there are so many people around me that are so full of potential that I cannot see how anyone could possibly be worried about the future.
I do fear what the coming year brings, though. Terrified out of my mind, to be frank. I've had "senioritis" since I first entered ninth grade, but now I'm really scared about being out on my own. Of course, that's not for another year.
Amongst seeing R-rated movies, graduating from high school, applying for colleges (hopefully the one and only Lee University), and trying to raise curfew a bit longer, I really hope that the next year brings a potpourri of surprises that I'm not even expecting.