I remember when my little sister was born. I was 6 years old when Claire Marie was brought into this world. Fun fact- I even came up with her name! Doubt my parents expected their 6 year old to be the winning name suggestion, especially when I wanted to name Erin Grasshopper and/or Cheerio. 14 years later, and Claire has entered High School. Every time I think about it, I can’t help but to get extremely sentimental, remembering her first day of kindergarden. Actually, I feel like she should still be that cute little kindergarden girl sporting her favorite pink skort and Dora the Explorer barrettes. **Claire if you are reading this, sorry if i’m embarrassing you :) But alas, she has grown up and has entered the doors of my old high school, starting an entire new adventure.
Dear Claire, Be nice to everyone. Your life will be 10x easier if you never say a bad thing about anyone. Seriously, word gets around fast, even if you tell someone you think you can trust. KEEP MEAN THOUGHTS TO YOURSELF. There is nothing more awkward than someone finding out you talked poorly about them. You don’t want a reputation of being a mean girl. Study. I know this may seem like a no brainer, but taking the extra hour out of your after school relaxation to study for a test will not kill you. Freshman year is the easiest year, although it may not seem like it in the moment. You will thank yourself later when you have harder classes that you may, as hard as you try, not get a good grade in. Having a solid first year will save you. 3.6 is the magic number. It is early to start thinking about applying to college as a freshman, but you should keep in mind that doing well in high school is a direct reflection on the college you will be able to attend. When applying to colleges, the 3.6 GPA seemed to pop up a lot. I believe it is safe to say if you can maintain a 3.6 GPA you will get into almost any college you want. JUST DO IT. You will be so happy in 4 years when your application options are unlimited. Don’t rush anything. High school is notorious for coming of age in many categories. Drinking, drugs, sex... it will surround you very quickly. You’ll be surprised by how many kids lose their virginity in the early years of high school - sorry parents just spilling the truth. DON’T RUSH. You are way too young. Even if you think you’re ready, you're probably not. I know I sound like a parent but I’m not! Remember? I’m 20 years old. This isn't your parent talking, it’s just the truth. Going along with that, alcohol tastes bad, especially when you’re probably not going to spend more than $7 on a handle of vodka. You have a 95 percent chance of doing something dumb and or getting caught. CHILL OUT. You don't have to drink to be cool or have fun. AND if anyone thinks that, they suck…Don’t be friends with them. It’s ok to be the good kid.
Join clubs, do sports, get involved, go cheer on the sports teams! You. will. have. fun. Even if your friends don’t want to join a certain club that looks fun to you, do it anyways. Whats the worst that can happen? You go to the first few meetings and don’t like it? Thats ok, you're not stuck there forever. What is the best that can happen? You meet new friends and have fun. Go to the football, soccer, basketball and any sports teams that the rez is cheering at. It’s a lot of fun and I have the best memories from going to Hall sporting events and cheering with my friends.
Gossip blows over very quickly. If you ever run into a situation where you are the center of a drama scene and EVERYONE is talking about it, seriously don’t stress. It will blow over so quickly, no one will even remember in the grand sceme of things. I have a journal I kept from freshman year titled “gossip girl” (LOL) and I wrote down all of the drama and gossip… So classic freshman I know…But when I read it again, I didn't even remember one of the stories ever happening. It’s not the end of the world. Eat Breakfast. Nothing worse than being hungry in class. And you wont pay attention, you’ll just think of how hungry you are. Take pictures and keep them somewhere safe. You’ll look back on freshman year soon enough, and think about how cute and little you all were. Get pictures printed and keep them in a box or album. Just do it, trust me on this one. Go for extra help. Teachers love it, and it will benefit you a lot. If they see you trying, they will be on your team. Teachers want you to do well, even the evil ones, so if you’re struggling ask them for help. Staying after school for a little seriously won’t kill you.
Dress appropriately and chill with the makeup. It’s honestly just awkward and YOU WILL LOOK DUMB if you wear a party outfit to school. Wear clothes that make you feel good. Take time to look your best every day, not for anyone but yourself. I’ve always found that if I feel like I look my best, I do my best. I never wore sweatpants or PJ pants a single day of my high school career. If you wear lounge clothes you’ll feel sleepy and lazy all day. Present yourself with confidence and poise even if it means waking up a little bit earlier.
You are beautiful. You'll never need as much make up as you think. The less you wear the better. You honestly shouldn't be doing your makeup for over 15 minuets…10 really. If you are, you are probably wearing too much.
Honestly, you’ll figure it all out as you go. This is the only time in your life where your world will be so small and simple…but really fun. Cherish these years where you get to see your best friends everyday in school because before you know it, you’ll all be graduating. Love always, AB