‘That’s the Moment I Realized I Needed to Grow Up’


I noticed I started to outgrow some of my friends my freshman year. When I first began high school I wasn’t motivated to have really high grades, and I cared more about my social life than I did about my next geometry quiz. I no longer talked to my genius friends who would study all the time and started hanging out with different people. Sophomore year rolled around and I cared more about the organizations I was in rather than keeping up with the new friends I had previously made. Finally for my junior year all I cared about was how I was going to get an “A” in every single class, and I no longer made time for the friends. My friends each year changed and I seemed to have a new best friend every week. The thing that sucked most was that was I was creating relationships with people and then never getting back to them. Now my senior year is here and I look back at how I could have created more genuine friendships and it makes me sad to think of all the friends I no longer talk to. Something I wish I could have learned when I started high school it was okay to branch out and make new friends, and it is okay to leave some friends behind who don’t value what you value, but it’s better to have a smaller amount of genuine people who care for you rather than an abundant amount of strangers.

Every year I try to start my classes off of positive as I can so I don’t have a bias toward my teachers. I try to keep this mentality throughout the semester, but I always come across some classes where creating a relationship with my teacher is harder than the curriculum. Junior year I struggled with getting along with my teachers because I had the wrong assumption that my teachers were going to baby me and make sure I get all my assignments done on time. The moment I realized I needed to grow up and take care of my grades is whenever I got my first zero on a assignment. I went to my teacher and asked why I got a zero and she pulled my blank assignment up and told me I never saved my work so I wouldn’t receive a grade. I laughed because I thought she was joking. I’ve never had a teacher not change my grade whenever I made a simple mistake. She laughed along with me but said she wouldn’t change my grade. In that moment I was so baffled that I just sat down and cried. The worst part is that I didn’t want to cry, but I couldn’t help but to cry. That day was truly the worst, but I learned something valuable. Always save your work! Besides that I learned it’s important to remember that assuming your teachers will bend their rules to accommodate you is not a real thing. If you have teachers that have set rules make sure you follow them, and not make the mistake I made when I thought my teachers would baby me.

I recommend joining a student organization. The organizations at Lake ridge teach you more than just what they offer. I have been a part of 5 different organizations in high school, and in each one I have learned what real worth ethic is. Being the Senior Class President and working alongside my amazing officers has set a foundation in my personality that I will be able to use whenever I join organizations in college. Many people may see it as a hassle, but being a part of something that isn’t just school related teaches you values that you will be using in the future. Lake Ridge is only growing, and the student body is in charge of making it be successful. I encourage everyone to help make Lake Ridge the best school in the district!

Natalia Cardenas is the Senior Class President and is interested in studying Neurosciences in college. She will be a special contributing writer throughout the school year.