This week for #WarriorWednesday, Kelley Kossanyi, a graduating senior, shared her story of what it’s like to be graduating in the midst of COVID-19. Check out what she has to say below!
To the struggling high school student,
Four years ago I told myself this moment would come. Over and over again I heard the words “One day you will graduate and this little piece of time won’t feel like such a big deal anymore.” I held onto those words, day after day. However, after it was all over, I didn’t want to lose touch of what high school was really like. I didn’t want to pretend it all was okay after I walked out the doors. I didn’t want to look back and think “wasn’t my favorite experience but it was fine”. Because the truth is, it wasn’t fine. It was hiding in teachers’ cabinets, it was panicking in bathroom stalls, ducking my head down as I rushed to the councilors, crying all night and missing class in the morning. It was hours upon hours of therapy, cold spoons to get rid of the swelling around my eyes, and days of frustration, sadness, and embarrassment.
The last four years, of course, held many good moments. However, it simply felt wrong to allow my smiling graduation photo to overshadow it all. Since freshman year I have been taking photos before after and during school-related panic with this post specifically in mind. I have done so because as a 9th grader, I wish I would have known how many other students faced the difficulties I faced. I wish I could have seen the truth so many experiences behind the cords, the good grades, and the college acceptances. So, to any student who feels they aren’t able to scream “Go Aves” at the top of their lungs right now, this is for you. I promise you there is an end to this chapter, this is my proof. And believe it or not, despite it all, I am now more than ever proud to call myself a Sycamore alum because regardless of my mental illness, the simple truth is- it is always okay to not be okay. #speakupaves #classof2020strong