Beach Week – 2020

Senior Jordyn Green poses on a beach. Beach Week is an Md. tradition where students flock to the beaches post-graduation.

Jordyn Green

Senior Jordyn Green “poses” on a beach. “Beach Week” is an Md. tradition where students flock to the beaches post-graduation.

By Jordyn Green, Online Editor-in-Chief

I never really identified with WCHS. My entire high school career, I found other ways to define myself: through friends, extracurriculars, family and interests. School was like a job to me; I would go in the morning, leave in the afternoon, then begin my day and express myself. It’s kind of funny that I wasted so many hours with this mindset– in my head pretty much my entire day was a waste of time.

Yet, the waste in itself was not my days spent at school, but rather my attitude. I spent whole mornings and afternoons without speaking to a soul. I lived in my earbuds; I lived in the world that was my thoughts and nobody else’s. I have no good reason or explanation for this at all. I’m an extreme extrovert, an intellectual who loves to get her opinions heard and someone who constantly needs validation and advice from her peers. So this all doesn’t really seem to add up, right?

The pressures WCHS places on us to be the model student, model athlete, model friend, in addition to being a literal model are immense. It was easy for me just to allow myself to cave in. I don’t mean to scapegoat the school culture for my out-of-the-ordinary introverted-ness once I reached Gainsborough Rd.; I simply reference this because it is a factor that has influenced my high school experience, in addition to the high school experiences of so many who have come before me, and the many who come after.

I lived my four years on a pendulum. In certain classes, like the J for example, I was unequivocally myself. Loud, obnoxious, rambunctious, absolutely hilarious, inquisitive and above all, happy. In classes where I felt I could embrace who I was, I did. However in others, I was silent. Not participatory, quiet, withdrawn. I’d get the work done, probably pawn it off to someone else once I was done, then sit silently, listen to music and brood in my thoughts. Maybe it was the people in these classes, maybe the teachers, maybe the subject, but regardless this phenomenon happened to me every single year of high school. 

Right here in this article, I want to be able to provide an insightful lesson about what this has taught me, and what I could pass onto others. But honestly, I need to keep writing in this unfiltered manner in order to dissect my true feelings about this flip-flop of persona. 

Do I believe that you should be yourself in every class? Absolutely. You should use the classroom as an opportunity to create growth and intellectual stimulation for yourself. Whether that means raising your hand for every single question or none, talking to every person in a class or nobody, each period is an opportunity for you to further your best self (I’m aware I sound like a self-help coach right now). 

But do I believe that maybe there’s this quiet, introverted, hardworking version of myself that only comes out when I need it, that maybe I was being myself, just a different version? Maybe WCHS actually brought out another side of me that I didn’t even know existed until genuinely this moment writing? Maybe instead of feeling less like myself in those classes where I blended into the crowd, I was really just adapting and getting more comfortable with another side of me I don’t know as well.

Wow, this got deep, really really fast. In fact, I’m honestly surprising myself as I write this. My takeaway from all of this is that high school is a place where you will grow into yourself. What that means varies per individual. Along these four years, you’ll discover so much about yourself: your capabilities, your passions, your values, your hopes and dreams. It will come at times when you least expect it, like right now, writing this article. 

If I have one thing to say about high school, it’s that it happens. Whether you want it to go fast or slow, even during the times where you just want it to stop (and you probably make a joke about dropping out), high school will keep going. It’s both a blessing and a curse. So, if it’s just going to keep happening whether you like it or not, you might as well enjoy it. I sure as hell did.