One Senior's advice to Juniors — cherish your future present

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Cheyann Greirson ’16

Thirteen years, 117 months, 3,575 days, or approximately 113,880 hours – this is the amount of time I have spent at Convent of the Sacred Heart, yet nothing could have prepared me for my senior year.
Even after years of Mad Minutes, United States history classes, and dreaded two-hour long finals, I still do not feel fully prepared to say goodbye. Soon the Class of 2017 will supplant the senior class and become the new fresh-faced leaders of the Upper School, starting the journey to their final goodbye to Sacred Heart. 

Cheyann Greirson '16
Cheyann Greirson ’16

While I often complain about the long days and even longer nights at Sacred Heart, my time will soon be condensed to memories—memories of congé, goûter, the many prayer services, chapels, liturgies, my friends, teachers, and everything in between. With less than one month left at Sacred Heart, I have been working to hold onto these memories and create as many new ones as possible. 
For the juniors, the stress of the college application process has already begun and it certainly will not lessen anytime soon. I remember not only striving to get the best possible standardized test scores and writing the perfect college essay, but also straining myself trying to get straight A’s in every class and dividing my time into countless extracurricular activities and community service projects. 
My constant anxiety pertaining to the future began to consume my life, and I failed to enjoy some of my firsts and lasts at Sacred Heart.
While other students were thinking about how they were going to utilize the new athletic center, I was busy thinking about how many points my GPA was going to drop after receiving an 83 on my math test. I could even feel the stress over college applications emanating off of my classmates during the Emmaus retreat, which was designated time for us to relax and bond with both God and each other.  
Chapels, liturgies, morning meetings and every other Sacred Heart tradition just became excess periods of time that prevented me from meeting with my college guidance counselor. All of these events passed by without me realizing that these were the last times I would be able to experience everything Sacred Heart has to offer. I was so stressed thinking about my future, I was not living in the present.

So to the juniors, my advice to you as you begin your last year at Sacred Heart is to cherish your time. Be present and engaged in every morning meeting, mass and sports game.
While it is almost impossible to not come across stress in your senior year of high school. It is, however, possible to slow down and enjoy your final year wearing a kilt and attending Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne prayer services before moving onto your next chapter in life. There is so much to experience here that you will most likely not get to encounter in college, such as visiting the observatory, school-wide Christmas celebrations, and devouring four chocolate chip muffins in a day without being judged. 
As soon as you commence your year as seniors, learn to slow down and savor your new roles, because as distant as it seems, your last day in this institution is right around the corner.
– Cheyann Greirson, Co-News Editor