Starting as a Freshman

Written by a Freshman and for the reader that once was


Lina Abtouche, Contributor, Class of 2023

The summer before my Freshman year may have been the most stressful time in my life. From thinking about how to make new friends, to trying to make my way around unfamiliar hallways which so many before me have roamed through.

It was a struggle at first, especially because I just came from being the “upper class” of Fisher middle school. The transition was a mental mind game between my own insecurities and others’ expectations. I thought that it would take me more than a week to adjust to the new setting and the way people may treat me because I am a Freshman. Cliches clouded my imagination of what may happen throughout the year as the end of August drew to a close.

Fast forward to Freshman Orientation on September 3 when frazzled faces turned and questioned each other as they were being led into the next chapter of their lives. My immediate instinct was to go find my friends and stay with them until further instruction.

The atmosphere was jubilant, yet a bit of tension was among us as we all didn’t know what was planned. Not just for the next three hours or so, but for the years ahead. What would our obstacles be? Our triumphs? All that remained in a void of uncertainty as my tour guide came to a halt, for she just showed us the multitude of classes that we may step foot in. Some, we may never get to know.

Around the perimeter of the auditorium stood several upper class men looking directly at my class, the Class of 2023. All of them seemed to be accomplished in their own way. I wanted to ask each and every one of them, how they did it. How did they go through the years of a place portrayed as both exciting and intimidating by the media?  How will I make it through these four years of high school?

I thought this amusing as I realized that I wouldn’t get the same answer from all of them. Each of us have a life as complex as one’s own, which we are constantly living despite one’s personal lack of awareness of it. It wasn’t until the first week of October that I had the epiphany that I would never get an answer, nor would I give one. Why? Because your high school career is what you choose to make of it. The opportunities that are presented to you may be taken at your own will, for sometimes their may be mistakes. But, resilience is the nature of learning from those mistakes while taking them as lessons and continuing to move forward.

Freshman Orientation closed off with smiling faces and a few people that now had a clear mind. Yes, some of my questions were answered. Although, that night as I prepared myself for my first day of high school, an idea popped into my head. It took me into the future four years from now when I would be a Senior. I thought that if I made it through this much of my educational career, I would certainly make it through the days of EHS, even if it meant taking it one day at a time until I look back at myself now and articulate my choices. Maybe I won’t feel the same way about the topic that I am addressing currently. It all depends on you.

Now we are two months into the 2019-20 school year and things could not be better. From now knowing where my classes are located to getting involved with the school community! This could not have been possible without the upper-class men that answered all my persisting questions and empathized with how they once felt in my position.

Junior Selma Benkoukha guided me not only through the first day, but did not hesitate to provide a helping hand when it comes to making the most out of what EHS has to offer.

Senior Olivia Ross welcomed me with open arms to the Tennis Team and supported me from the sidelines! I cannot express my gratitude enough to these two upper class men and the so many others who have treated us as equals.

It may sound strange, but in High school, we all come together as one. When we were once separated, we make new friends in union. That is why, as a Freshman, I urge you to put yourself in the place that you were two, three, or even four years ago! Because you will not only understand the importance of inclusion, yet how far you have come and the impact you have made on so many entities.

Starting as a Freshman is difficult, but a rewarding experience. It allows room for growth, ambition for what is to come ahead, and crucial lessons to use when you look back.