Insider's Guide to High School The Tattoo

Don’t abuse your freedom

Zebbug, MALTA — The countdown that counts has just started. It’s back to school time, unfortunately, for most of us.

Let me be honest, gearing up for school ain’t my most favorite hobby, and probably not yours either, but it’s nonetheless important in order to get through your freshman year, particularly since you’ll be attending high school for the first time.

I can even hear you ask, “What the heck does she mean with gearing up?”

Well, I can reassure you that my version is not your parents’ one, if that’s any comfort.

Yes, yes, no studying and you gear up just the same, perhaps better, too. I mean something that no amount of endless studying without ambition can ever reach.

It’s about achieving a mindset where you ask yourself where you want to stand in the next few years. Do you wanna repeat? Do you wanna get straight As?

Whichever one you choose, think up an action plan.

Believe me, high school has so many traps – too much freedom – that you’ll need one.

Speaking of freedom, beware!

Between high school and your previous school there’s a gap of world-shattering proportions.

You’ll have the freedom of not attending classes. You might just be able to skip homework so easily you’ll gasp. Your teacher might not even learn your name after two years.

At high school everyone will just worry about himself – most teachers and counselors are there for the pay, and you must get into that college someday, so you better think about your marks.

That said, it follows that you can’t be a baby. Anyways, you’re not supposed to be. Babies don’t go to high school.

So, for your sake, don’t allow yourself to be one.

Missing classes and not doing your work is the conventional recipe for falling behind. And you don’t want your friends graduating while you study makeup lessons, do you?

Graduation may seem light years away, but these years fly so fast you won’t see them, and you won’t even realize it until they’re past and buried.

But let’s not beat around the bush! You want to miss classes because that’s just so mighty cool. You’ll enter into that cool clique. That popular person will start to notice you, yes you, and perhaps you’ve been uncool and unpopular and all the un’s you may think of for so long! You may even get that date you dreamed of these past years.

Sure, it will get you instant popularity and other trivial rewards.

But don’t fret so much over it.

Popular people change at a faster pace than Colin Farrell’s girlfriends. Popular one day, zombie the next, that’s the rule of the day at most high schools — though ,of course, it never hurts to be popular one of those days.

But don’t inflate your head. I’ve warned you.

It’s okay, don’t strangle me for nagging! Just bear with me a bit more; I’ve got a confession to make that will make all this come to some sense.

I know what it feels like to want to act cool, but the feeling of remaining behind just isn’t worth it. I’ve been through it, and believe me, getting out of that kind of a mess takes a hell of a lot longer than it did to get into it.

You’ll attend high school just once in your life. I hope that alone inspires you to use your time well and make the cut to college successfully. There, I’ve told you. My conscience is clear now. Good luck.

Maressa Zahra is a Reporter for Youth Journalism International.

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