Growing Pains

By Brooke Shamon
Voices @ Bedford High School

Writing has always come naturally to me. The desire to write, the inspiration to produce, and the motivation to create have kept me going all these years. Typically, when I get an article assignment, I can sit down and immediately begin my “vomit draft.” Gross, I know, but that’s the word my summer professor drilled into my head for our “craft” as she calls it.

However, when I pitched this idea and stuck with it (Preparing for College, Preparing for the Big Move, Going Going, Gone), I found myself at a loss for words. No perfect way to describe how this feels, no cute analogy or connection to a famous scene in a TV show or movie. I guess maybe it’s because I’m having a hard time understanding my own feelings.

As I’ve said in previous articles, college has always been a dream of mine. I know it seems like a crazy dream to have (common or uncommon), but growing up on the younger end of a big family I got to watch as each, and every older cousin headed off to campus. I remember thinking that I wanted that to be me someday.

When I entered the college search, it was kind of an escape for me. As with writing, I was jumping into the future. A future where drama didn’t exist or a future where I was living a life I wanted (ice cream for dinner, yay!). At a time where my life was kind of crashing down a college campus was the perfect escape.

I wished and wished and wished for it to come sooner, and as the years went by I did not believe I would ever get there. I guess now that I’m moving in a little less than a month it’s difficult to wrap my head around it. I am so excited and ready for this next chapter of my life, and I know it’ll be a great one. However, in that great escape I created for myself, I failed to consider leaving some friends behind, making a big move out of state and adjusting to a new lifestyle.

Like I said, I am so excited for this next chapter. It’s 2019, and I am getting older. It’s time for me to start believing and accepting that this next journey is going to be thrilling, exciting, scary, adventurous, new, and in a way, a leap of faith.

I think one of the things that scares me about this next chapter is that I have no idea what’s coming next. I’m packing boxes full of items I think I’ll need, picking out clothes that’ll keep me warm by the Hudson River and organizing my life, and yet in the same moment, I have no idea if I’ve packed the right things, chosen the right clothes, or prepared myself enough for the next four years.

I am a big believer in whatever is supposed to happen, is going to happen. Que sera, sera.

Although as I get ready to head to college that seems harder and harder to hang on to. Still, I knew the second I got the acceptance letter Marist College was where I was supposed to spend the next four years of my life. I just have no idea what’s coming next.

As a kid growing up in Bedford, you have a general idea of what your life will look like. I mean, my life didn’t turn out exactly the way I thought it would, but when it came to schooling, I knew I’d go from Davis to Lane, Lane to John Glenn and John Glenn to Bedford High. Those were 12 whole years mapped out for us. Yes, there were a couple of surprises thrown into the mix, but at the end of the day I knew I’d have my friends to see, I knew who I sat with at lunch and who I didn’t. I’d go back and forth between my house and my Dad’s apartment. I’d go to dance class every Monday or Tuesday night. The seasons would change from fall to winter, winter to spring and then summer would hit. And by the end of the warm weather and Cape-filled weeks, I knew I’d be returning to BHS or JGMS, Lane or Davis.

This time, I know I’ll be attending Marist, I know I’m moving to New York. I know I’ll meet new people and go to class. Be social and hopefully join a club or two, but I have no idea what else is in store for me. I guess that is what life is, I mean, you’re not supposed to know what’s coming around the corner good or bad. If you’d ask me, “what do you want out of these four years?” I could tell you. I want to be myself and make friends. I want to find a great group of guys and girls to spend my free time with. I want to succeed and learn a lot.  I want to live my life, and I want to fall in love. I want to gain a lot of knowledge and take any, and every opportunity offered to me. I want to work hard and find my way around New York City. I want to be the person I wish I had the courage to be in high school: happy, spontaneous, and relaxed, just to name a few. I want these next four years to be the best four of my life so far.

I guess the good thing about this mess I just poured all over this page is that I know it is all normal (keep that in mind, incoming Seniors!). It is normal to be a little scared, to be very excited, to feel ready one day and not so much the next, to overpack and decorate just a little too much, and to freak out and dye your hair rose-gold (please don’t panic, I can wash it out). It’s growing pains.

I think I will miss the little things the most: weaving my way through the hallways, the automatic reaction I would have the second the bell would ring, and the all-nighters pulled with friends at sleep-overs. (I’m sure I’ll have plenty more of those. However, I’m guessing they won’t be half as much fun). My advice to the incoming seniors (maybe even ALL high schoolers) is, don’t take it for granted, don’t wish it away. I did that my freshman, sophomore, and junior year. It might feel like some days will never end, and the ghosts of friendships past keep haunting you but remember that it’s high school. In a few years, the little fights over who sits where and “who posted that awful picture of me” won’t matter anymore. Don’t let small things like that ruin what could be a pretty great four years at BHS.

Fortunately, I feel as if I’ve finally found my crew this year. The gals and I recently realized that time is almost up, so we’ve planned our goodbye day. I know that is going to be extremely hard; we’ve been through so much together. There are going to be a lot of tears, a lot of laughs, and hugs, too. But I am thankful for every single one of them, and I know we’ll be sitting on a couch in one of our apartments in the next four years, laughing about how old and adult we’ve become.

I know this article has been messy and manic and reads all over the place, but that’s only because that’s exactly how I’m feeling right now as the summer winds down once again.

To end on a more positive note: I’ve made a lot of amazing friends who I love so much, I’ve created great memories to look back on and to share with my future kids someday. I have been supported by the family who loves me most (and of course, I love them more) and above all, I really have been lucky with my journey so far. So, with this article, I am going to start believing that a good thing is coming. I’m not going to run from it, I’m going to throw my backpack over my shoulder, fix my hair (of course, I’m a girl, duh), slide my shoes on, and head to class. I know I’m ready and I know the rest of my graduated class is, too.

See you August 24th, New York.





Editor’s Note:  The Citizen wishes Brooke a warm farewell as she leaves for her freshman year at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, New York. We are most appreciative of her series on her personal experience of the highs and lows of senior year and preparing for college. We are hopeful it provided some insight for our readers from at least one student’s perspective on this milestone year.  Contributing articles under the banner of Voices @ Bedford High is an opportunity for any student at the high school level at either Bedford High School or Shawsheen Valley Technical High School.  Please contact for details.

Keep our journalism strong! Support The Citizen Journalism Fund today. Contact The Bedford Citizen: or 781-325-8606

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x