Let me paint you a picture, it’s June 18th (a significant day for many reasons: It’s my friends birthday, it’s the first day of no revision/school work for about three months, and it’s also the day I regretably told my Mother I would remove the revision piles that had appeared on my floor. By piles I just mean a huge mess. I did not want to clear it up), the sun is shining, I’m wearing a Harry Potter t-shirt and I’m in the kitchen making a cup of tea in an effort to motivate myself to tackle all the clearing, dusting and hoovering. To be honest, I would much rather be preparing to watch the new series of Orange Is The New Black.
I like to think this is the calm before the storm. Or the intense drizzle shower. It wasn’t that dramatic
Meanwhile, outside in the sunlight that I wouldn’t get to enjoy for a few hours, my mother and neighbour were engaging in conversation dedicated to gossip about our other nieghbours. Outside they were doing this. Outside with the high risk of the others hearing them. How embarrassing. Regardless, I went outside and joined them. Don’t judge me, I pay my taxes. (I don’t.) (Not that I have to yet, I’m 18 and unemployed for at least another month, so if any government individual is reading this I promise I’m not breaking the law.)
Anyway, after the scandalous gossip, that to be honest was pretty disappointing after I realised I didn’t really care, my mum decided this was an appropriate time to announce that I had completed all my exams and that I was finished with school forever.
To this my neighbour jokingly replied “ooh being released into the Big Bad World?”
Now at the time this comment had absolutely zero impact, I probably replied with a joke. When did this sentence really hit home? Oh about 10 hours after the conversation when I was deciding which musical soundtrack to listen to.
Now, I don’t know if I’m having some sort of crisis or what – but I am never going to be in school again. Thirteen years of my life have been spent in education and truth be told – I didn’t hate it.
Or at least I didn’t hate all of it.
The exams, the stress, the awful teachers and the other students that possess the qualities that highly suggest that in later life they will be terrible humans? Yeah no. The phrase “school days are the best days of your life” has always bothered me. The only people I can see that applying to is the individuals that enjoyed making others lives a misery within a classroom.
Looking back I notice each school year significantly improved. Primary School was spent moving from person to person never truly feeling liked and waiting for them to leave me because they’ve found someone better. Which pretty much always happened. Learning to stay quiet because being told that “you should stop butting in” is really a request for you to stop giving your opinion all together. Hearing a teacher tell your mother that it’s “wonderful she’s friends with everyone” was not the greatest thing because truth be told, I wasn’t friends with everyone. I was more like a spare part desperately wanting to fit in and not knowing how. Naturally my first year of secondary school was spent the same, the feeling that I wasn’t fitting in and that those girls in the corner were laughing at me hadn’t gone away. Through Secondary School I mostly stayed quiet, trying not to get noticed because conflict really isn’t my thing and somehow, across the years, I managed to make friends that I think like me most of the time. So yes, the social side of school had definitely improved over the years.
Academically? Well for some reason I excelled. Placing importance on getting A’s and trying to not to show intense disappointment over a grade C whilst my friend cried over her grade D’s. In fact, I would probably be a lot happier if I didn’t push myself to get the absolute best grade. Truth be told, when I think about it, the only aspect I enjoyed was the learning. You can’t get anxious over learning information – unless you have to teach it to a whole class during a ten minute presentation.
Is the world outside school Big and Bad? The school environment isn’t exactly a peace garden full of daises and roses. Yes you have literally no responsibilities within school and you can easily see your friends everyday with no hassle, but the social dangers school creates literally turns that potential garden into a war zone.
When I think about it, I have absolutely no idea how to function in the real world. Taxes? Nope. Getting a job you enjoy? Nope. Realising what you actually want to do with your life? Nope. Buying a house? Nope. Actually having enough money to buy a house? Nope Maybe I’ll never know. I mean, I’ll probably learn how to do the whole taxes thing – I wouldn’t survive in jail.
But for now, I have a three month summer before university. Whilst my hopes about getting into my first choice have dwindled slightly due to a certain moral bankruptcy phrase and a unit four biology paper, I know for a fact I won’t ever be returning to school. I also know I have no idea how I’ll be spending these three months. I do have a job now, someone clearly thought I was employable so there’s that. I have a lot of books to read. I recently signed up to netflix and now I have a huge list of TV shows to watch. I have a blog that I’ve regretfully neglected for months. I have friends that I’ll never share a lunch table with again.
From this side, the world doesn’t seem that Big and Bad. It seems full of opportunity and excitement. I suppose, this is the exact opinion I’m supposed to have.
I can definitely hear all the adults sighing, the naivety of the young.