Senioritis

Jian presents: An incoherent reverie

When I was young, I cared about trivial things, such as getting enough to eat, watching the next cartoon, and playing around. When I grew up, I got sick, I got scars falling from my bicycle, I got into fights, learned what happens when a boy “accidentally” hits his teacher with an improvised slingshot, and did as young boys did. A few years later, I knew how it felt to be hurt, how important money is, what happens when you play with fire, and discovered why a shopping cart shouldn’t be used as a skateboard. I’ve wanted to grow up so fast then. Fast forward, now, I’m learning how sad other people’s lives are, why it hurts to be betrayed sometimes, what you should do to a pervert standing next to you in the public restroom, discovering that people are dying unjustly all over the world and realizing you can only do so much.

What happens in the future? After graduating, I’ll be off to college and who knows what’ll happen after that. It won’t be a happily ever after so soon, like fairy tales. It’ll be a battle, it’ll be a journey, it’ll be an adventure!

My life as a high school student is down to three more months. While I’m excited at the prospect of going to college and meeting new people, I’m afraid to leave my alma mater behind. She’s taught me since I was young my ABC’s and 123’s, then those complicated things after that. I’ve met a lot of people: bullies, user-friendly people, friends and inspirations. They’ve all shaped me to become who I am today, and I’m grateful, even to those thugs I’ve had trouble with.

I don’t want to grow up anymore. I wish the world could stop moving. Is there a way, aside from memories, to preserve these moments?

And so I suffer from senioritis: that feeling of lethargy you get when you feel the end of your (high school) life is near. It’s a melancholic reverie that prepares you for the inevitable: graduation day. It’ll be a bittersweet day of hello’s and goodbyes, of tears and laughter.

Sometimes, I’m on the verge of quitting. Why study when you’re going to graduate anyway right? Already, some of my friends from other sections are beginning to feel summer vacation in the middle of cold November. Teachers have walked out numerous times since they wouldn’t listen. I heard how a class made Mrs. Portia cry and walk out of the room, how Mr. David broke a ballpen in two and sprayed its contents, how patient teachers were driven on the edge of madness.

But then again, if I quit, what profit is there to me?

A little voice cries out. It’s a stubborn little voice that just won’t seem to die. It shouts out from the deep chasms of my soul: “Stay your course! Keep fighting!”

I quote from my Math teacher, Mr. David: “Quitting is putting a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”

I heard this quote from him one day, when we were having trouble grasping a mathematic concept. And we all know how hard it is to grasp a mathematical concept. But somehow, as I left school that day, I think of how this quote has changed my life forever.

People who give up never succeed. If I quit now, maybe I’ll be a quitter in the future. Then I’ll be a quitter worker, a quitter son, a quitter father to my children, who would probably turn out to be quitters as well.

I can’t let senioritis win this time. This is for the best.

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    For people who love to think.

    Jian Carlo R. Narag, MD

    2005-2017

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