Sometimes I like to think of my life as an opera.
I’ve never actually seen an opera, unless you count the movie The Phantom of the Opera, but I assume that they are basically just musicals where the actors sing in a more extravagant fashion. Not that my life is extravagant, per se, but still.
My opera is filled with minor highs and lows in the beginning, floating along like Fur Elise before dramatically dropping into a sea of churning Tchaikovsky notes, moving so rapidly that the sudden plunge into an interlude gives one the sensation of standing on a bus that has just slammed its brakes.
Following this pattern chronologically, my high school career could be summarized as the rise after an interlude. (It certainly felt like it at the time, anyway.)
Freshman year found me a terrified fourteen-year old who clung to the few girls who weren’t embarrassed to be seen with me. I had a devastating crush on a boy in my Biology class, and unwittingly signed up for a journalism class, despite having no interest in journalism and crippling social anxiety. My wardrobe was an odd combination of body-shielding t-shirts/sweats and figure-hugging tank tops and jeans. I was torn between wanting everyone to notice me, and wanting to go completely unnoticed. (In hindsight, this may be something I still struggle with today.)
Sophomore year was the year of sharp turns and quick changes. My previously awkward and almost painfully appropriate relationship changed to something that Sandals Guy and I probably should’ve gotten referrals for in less than a week. Hormones are weird, and boys are even weirder. I still craved attention like a cat craves the red glow-y dot, but reacted poorly in almost every instance where I was given any significant amount of it. Like an elephant in the wild, I completely abandoned my herd to cling to a potential mate, which in my case, actually worked out fairly well.
Junior year encompassed the height of my high school career, wherein I was was forced to work harder than ever before in some classes while completely blowing other classes off. I gradually began to acquire friendly acquaintances and successfully curbed my instinctive rudeness. I began to seriously consider the future for the first time.
And now, the pièce de résistance, my senior year. First semester seems to be the climax of the story, in which the musical undertones present throughout the opera all suddenly seem to fall into place, and the main protagonist learns what it is she must do, immediately followed by a depressing and lengthy interlude. But she returns, sword in hand and wounds healed, to finish the battle she started. I guess we’ll see what happens in the end.
Sometimes it’s hard for me to remember that my life is not a movie or an opera, that there will be no credits rolling when I graduate, no Judd Nelson to fist-pump his way into the sunset, that the story will continue. I used to think that it was just a poorly written story, that I didn’t care how it would end…
But I think I’m too much of nerd to not wait around and find out.