There's an ultimate icebreaker between adults and children around this time of year. It's almost sure as day, really; once the August heat begins to turn into a crisp Autumn breeze, the local swimming pools begin calling it quits for the year
and the stores begin slashing prices on backpacks, the one question is always asked as if on a broken record.
“Are you ready for school to start?”
It's hard to go anywhere without being asked that one question, or a slight variation of it. Recently a cashier at a Nike retail store asked me as she was scanning my new kicks, “How do you feel about school starting?”
I smiled a bit, blushed as usual (I'm always red for whatever reason) and told her, “I'm as ready as I'm ever going to be.”
Isn't that really what the end of summer is like, though? Ready or not, the inevitable is going to happen, and Father Time isn't going to slow down because some kids don't want to go to school. You have to be ready, whether you like it
or not, because the annual “back-to-school” era will without fail lead into the “school” era.
By the way, the shoes were 31 bucks.
Not too shabby, huh?
This year marks my senior year. I don't know exactly how to feel about it, honestly. It seems like such a short time ago that I was waking up for my first day at the big bad high school. Now, SMFHS has become so ordinary to me. It's like a
second home, just massive and filled with an estimated 1,999 other
teenagers. On Friday morning, before the sun is even awake and before
the birds are ready to chirp, I'll be waking up for the beginning of the end. I'll finally be a senior.
On one hand, I'm excited for what the future holds. Hopefully by this time next year I'll be packed and ready to go to some college for some Communications major, but the uncertainty of that happening brings both thrill and butterflies. If
I could, I'd want to know right now just what my future will bring!
There's so much to look forward to in this final high school year alone—attending football games, writing for the school newspaper, returning for my last year on the Speech and Debate team and even graduation—that it is almost overwhelming to try to process.
On another hand, I'm not ready to go.
Like I said, SMFHS has become a home. Leaving two homes at once is like torture to an emotional teen, not to mention going straight into the mysterious world of college life.
Legally speaking, I'll be an adult later this year. I laugh out loud as I type this because if I were to look up from my laptop at this very second, I'd be looking at a room filled with childhood.
I have all my Little League Baseball trophies sitting on my dresser, petty little wind-up toys and knick-knacks on my television set and snowglobes galore near all my bobbleheads. The only thing that speaks volumes of how much I've matured in the last three years (trust me, I have at least a little) is the inspirational
quote stuck to my closet door.
So, in a nutshell, going back to school this year is going to be kind of a new experience for me. Last time I was at the top of the totem pole was in eighth grade, when I still had red braces and this scraggly hair that makes me cringe to
remember. Being a senior won't be easy by any stretch, but it will be worth it in the end.
I guess that answers the question. Now you know, ladies and gentlemen: Jimmy Miller is ready for school. No need to ask that question any more! But if you do want another icebreaker for the next time we talk, go ahead and ask this one:
“Do you know where you are going to college?”