Lola’s POV: How to Deal With the Back to School Blues

School just started so I want to start off my blog this week with a flashback to elementary school

back to school Lola

Photo: Courtesy of Lola Montilla

School just started so I want to start off my blog this week with a flashback to elementary school. Back then you couldn’t wait to go to school, jittering in bed the night before with excitement. You’re going to  see your friends, and not to mention all the new friends you’re going to make, oh and your favorite teacher, and art class! The smell of freshly sharpened pencils and crayons would transport me to another world.  Who wouldn’t be excited?

Fast forward to current day. Shivering in bed because you got used to going to sleep at 2:00 am during the summer and the melatonin isn’t quite doing its job. You’re going to see your classmates and your close group of “besties” and you wonder how extremely hard it’s going to be to interact with an absolutely unknown human being who they call a newbie. Oh and that teacher that you’re scared of, and all the work, not to mention the summer reading book you haven’t finished and the 100 math problems you were given for summer practice that you have not even touched. Seriously, no fun!

Photo: Courtesy of Lola Montilla

Time changes us drastically and I’m just trying to find where that change happened. Was it when we started getting more work that we started dreading school? Or was it when we started becoming more vulnerable to being older and being judgmental (and built up walls to protect ourselves from judgement as well?) I think school should be a beautiful experience! High school should be a safe haven where we determine what we like and dislike and what we can become better at. It should provide us with space to grow confidently, navigating between trial and error, not perfection or failure. Unfortunately, striving for more credits, AP courses, extracurricular activities with the mere goal of bulking up our transcripts doesn’t really allow for that.

I want to be able to change that mindset, not just in others but in myself as well. Because I, as well as a whole bunch of other teens, am guilty of the “Oh my gosh, can school be any more boring?!” or the “how many days til’ summer?” mentality. It’s totally normal. I think that instead we should be looking forward to school and learning. Our classes shouldn’t burn us out and make us sleep deprived! They should make us want to learn more, and explore other related topics, but we’re so stuck in the box and in the same mindset, that it has made us unable to enjoy learning.  

My goal this year is to make it happen: to allow room to explore my passions between SAT math and college biology, to let my writing take me away from AP English and third level French.  I’m hoping to further my career-planning amidst essays and exams. And if the bell doesn’t ring loud enough to make me snap out from my daydreaming, I hope to allow the whiff of my new school supplies to take me back to the little girl in the uniform with a big bow in her hair, and enjoy, for a second, the time and place I’m in.

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