“Wow,” I reflected while wrapping up my March column. “That’s six out of seven.”
Out of all of the responsibilities of editor-in-chief, I had mulled over what would be the most daunting in the days after I was told this position was mine.
Would it be looking over all the little details? Ensuring spell-check didn’t become a false friend? Making sure every staff member knew what his or her part was?
Turns out, it wasn’t any of these things. It was writing my perfunctory column each issue.
If you didn’t happen to know, the editor is required to publish an opinion piece in each edition of the paper. Much as I love to share my ideas, this turned out to be much harder than I expected.
Being definite about what I think? Being able to defend my claims? Being willing to put my ideas and thoughts out there? It was quite the challenge.
This year, I wrote. I wrote and wrote and wrote — oftentimes ending up with two, three, even four columns for each issue and choosing the best one.
(One of the rejects for March was a list of reasons I’m excited for “Pitch Perfect 2.” A high school newspaper may not be the best venue for that.)
After finishing each opinion, I would think to the most intimidating of them all — my senior column, where I am supposed to comment on high school sans the clichés.
Last time I had to write like this was with my senior speech, which may have just turned into a compassionless criticism of every past senior prank. What I’ve learned from high school, everyone!
So, with all this in mind, I realized I had finished six out of seven.
I’m what you call “number-driven.” Within each aspect of my life are defining numbers that help shape me. Most are little things — typically, my mom gives me about a five-minute warning before she wants to go somewhere, and more can happen to my appearance in those five minutes than most mortals think possible.
When I’m struggling my way through a tough swim practice, I focus on the numbers (or think through song lyrics — “Riptide” by Vance Joy and “Seven Nation Army” by The White Stripes are definite favorites). Knowing I’ve finished seven of eight butterfly drills and am 2,200 meters into the practice is better than “halfway-ish.”
Then, of course, comes school. I won’t lie — there have been days when I’ve calculated the hours, minutes and seconds left of class. Who hasn’t?
But, unlike the five minutes I’m given to get ready or the 5,500 meters in a swim practice, the (approximately) 700 days I’ve spent at Blue Valley don’t click to 100 percent and disappear from my life the second they’re over.
Graduation does not mark the true, final end of our experiences here.
My time at BV has had a limitless impact on who I am as a person, and the rippling effects of these high school experiences go beyond the number of seconds, hours and days we spent in class, at school events and, yes, doing homework.
Even though the countdown clock may be clicking to :00 after these last two weeks, the aftermath of these past four years will stick with us for a lifetime.