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Tying up the loose ends

The school year is ending and we are all starting to reminisce about friends lost, friends made and memories created. Unfortunately, with all this reflection come recollections of petty drama, harsh words and the way things used to be.

There are quite a few instances from high school I wish I could take back. Since there are no do-overs in life, now is the time to mend broken ties before we all go our separate ways.

Swallow your pride and break the ice

If you had a falling out with someone, make it a point to let him or her know that you still care and want to make things right. “I was best friends with this guy forever,” Senior Paulina Urbanowicz said. “But it hurt my feelings when he got a girlfriend and didn’t make time for me anymore.” While initially Urbanowicz was too stubborn to be the first one to initiate contact again, she is glad she did. “I realized I was being childish and if our friendship was that important to me, I should give it one last shot. I think all he needed was a reminder that I was there for him no matter what.”

 

No substitute for time

Some high school blunders are better left untouched – so those involved have time to recover and heal. Senior Madison Hurwitz sheepishly admits, “I think I scared off the guy who was my first kiss. I ended up telling him he was my first kiss and I made a big deal about it.” Hurwitz claims she has no regrets but says she still cringes at how boy crazy she was. “Even though it isn’t a big deal now, I don’t want him to think I am obsessive. I decided it was best to let it be than to try to explain myself. Then, I could prove I have moved on.”

Some things are better left unsaid

While it is so tempting to tell the girl who sits at your lunch table that she is a back-stabbing hypocrite and she will have a reality shock in college, bite your tongue and take deep breaths before you dish out words you can’t take back. It might feel liberating in the heat of the moment to get everything off your chest, but you usually end up regretting it later and the other person is left with bitter feelings toward you. Ask yourself what you hope to achieve by telling them how you feel, and if you don’t think it will change anything, then don’t say it. One of my favorite quotes is “spend so much time improving yourself that you have no time to criticize others.” Enough said.

 

Don’t say you’ve changed, prove it

Who you are begins with what you do and you can tell people all you want that you are not the same person you were freshman year, but if you don’t have actions to back it up, your words mean nothing. It is never too late to clear up your tainted reputation by finishing strong these next few months.

“I have been called a player and somewhat of a partier in my high school,” Senior Matt Kethman laments. “While I was fine with that reputation junior year, I don’t want people to have that memory of me 10 years down the road.” In order to reverse his rep, Kethman stopped going to wild parties and texting so many random girls and instead started volunteering every Saturday at Habitat for Humanity with a new group of friends.

 

Even if the people you are surrounded by aren’t your favorite people in the world, you still want them to have a favorable opinion of you when you move on. You have nothing to lose now by reaching out one last time to acquaintances lost. And it is never too late to reach out to the people in your class that you never took the time to get to know. Leave a lasting impression on those around you so your high school classmates are proud to say they knew you when.

 

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