5 Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Started High School

5 Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Started High School

Do you remember those Chicken Soup books?

I used to read them by the handful, and by the time I was 13, I was completely convinced that all these embarrassing (yet, oddly happily ended) moments would happen to me.

It really does feel like a lifetime ago, but I was, too, a freshman in high school. I’m the oldest child in my family, so I didn’t have anyone to blaze the trails for me and offer me advice on ways not to make a fool of myself. While the first day was exactly as scary as I thought it would be, the rest of the time wasn’t near as bad. I survived (triumphed, even) the congested halls and the sticky cafeteria floors and the physical activity class I didn’t want to take. In the list complied, I’ve offered a few words of wise to lead you into your high school career.


1. Friendships Will Change and That’s Okay

For me, there wasn’t a huge falling out that happened with my first middle school friend. We just simply weren’t close anymore. High school is that time for change, and we both readily embraced that. We drifted apart to different friend groups. I’m still incredibly close with two of the girls from that middle school friend group. My middle school bestie introduced me to some fantastic ladies, and without her I had to brave the world of making friend on my own. This is something I will openly admit I am terrible at.

In high school, I had the opportunity to hone my people skills. I gained some wonderful new friends because of that. Friends will come and go and that’s okay. I’m closer to my friends now because I know that they really are my people, and not just the people I sit with at lunch.


2. Get Organized

I got my first planner for my blog as a freshman. Finally, my junior year, I got a planner for school and for my blog and I bought myself some pretty, sparkly pens and sticky notes. This began my obsession with list making. This planner reduces my stress. With all the things going on, my color-coded life helps to keep it all in order, and me sane.


3. You’ll Adjust to Body Changes

During my freshman year, all I heard about was the dress code and how shoulders were provocative and certain colors of hair were better than others. The more my body changed, the less comfortable I felt with it. I wasn’t particularly fond of my boobs or my butt and how both of them were filling out my tops and jeans.

As high school progressed, I became more at ease with myself. I realized that this is my body (frizzy hair, long limbs, boobs, and all) is my body. That’s how I became comfortable with myself. High school is more than just changes in your personality; it’s also when your body changes. Whether you like them, love them, or hate them, they are yours.


4. There Will Be Blood

I just want to tell everyone everywhere that the nurse’s office has pads and/or tampons for when your period comes early and you’re underprepared. They may not always be the nicest, most sympathetic of medical professionals in the world, but they do have period material in abundance.


5. It’s Going to Be Okay

It’s scary and it’s new and it’s sort-of almost adulthood. Believe me when I say I completely understand. Middle school was a hard time for me, but in high school I found a rad group of guys and gals I’m lucky enough to call my humans. We’re this band of smart misfits who have eclectic taste in music, food, and politics, and we are us. We were brought together by the educational institution called high school. We’ve been through thick and thin, and now we’re being spread across the world: Portland, Spain, Texas, England.


So, yes, high school is scary. That first day you’re going to be overwhelmed. For me, I fretted the most over the lunchroom. Whatever it may be for you, breathe. It’s going to be okay.

I’ve had my best and worst teachers here. I’ve been exposed to parts of the human psyche that you can pretty much only experience when humans are transitioning from child to adult. I wish someone told me to just pick a seat in the cafeteria, that the girl I met in tennis was going to be my human, that the best friends that I had in middle school would stick by my side. I wish someone told me I was going to lose some friends. I wish I had someone to tell me to calm down, stop fretting, and breathe.

This is a good part. Better yet? It only gets better.


Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock.