Senior Goodbye

Mia Emerson, Feature Editor, Editorial Cartoonist

It has been a long road, but I made it. The trials and tribulations of high school has molded me into the person I am today. From friendships and new experiences to losing friendships and loved ones to being overly stressed, high school has encompassed most of my important moments for the past four years. Therefore, no matter how much I am happy to leave high school, it will be extremely difficult. Especially this year, as the challenge of COVID-19 had created a level of bonding between students and teachers previously unseen. This has strengthened my bond with some friends, but weakened with others.
We have all experienced a lot of loss this year. For me personally, I lost senior privileges, in-person school, the progress I made in coping with depression and anxiety, and I lost my grandmothers. It was a horrible year, I lost much more than I gained and many times I felt like the work was not worth it. I stuck it out thanks to the support of my amazing teachers, friends, and family. I would like to thank all of you, especially my best friend Mrs. Butler, my closest friend Jason, and my mother.
Thank you Mrs. Butler for being my teacher for two-ish years (does junior year count???). You are the best teacher ever. You are extremely kind and very forgiving, and though our Journalism class loves to tease you, we do it out of love.
In your class, I got to experience things I never thought I would, like going to State finals for Editorial Cartooning and see you hit a bird while driving on the highway or see James climb on top of the cougar bus. I would have never met so many wonderful people like my fellow editors Noah and Delaney. Your class has been a safe space for so many people over the years, and I know it will continue to be for many others even without me in it.
Thank you Jae for sticking with me for four years. I remember when we first met in freshman year gym class where we were scared little children. You were one of my first new friends and we’ve been through so much together. I know we each experienced some awful things these past few years, and I know for me personally that our friendship has been a comfort. I know that because of the circumstances we have grown apart a bit, as we both know I’m characteristically bad at communicating consistently, but I hope to keep in contact with you as we start our college journeys. Maybe in the summer, we can finally start our summer tradition of CVS trips back up. Either way, I’m glad to have been able to see you grow up into the man that you are, but the boy with the funky hair and NASA addiction will always be in my heart!
And thank you Mom for always willing to bend backwards for me. I know that you do so much and have sacrificed a lot for me and Alexa, and I don’t know how I would have made it through high school without your support. I know I can be short with you sometimes, but I want you to know that I love you, and that I will always love you even at your worst. I know it’s difficult to accept, but your children are all grown up now. I’m leaving the nest and heading off to college.
I know one day I will look back at my times at PSHS with nostalgia, but for now, with only a few days to go until graduation, it feels a little unreal. I hope I will leave a lasting impression at this school in many aspects: academically, in the Paw Print, but most importantly in the memories of teachers and students alike.
I guess this is goodbye.