On Coming Back

It’s strange, coming back.

As I walked through the doors of my high school last week to attend Commencement, all I could think of was: I miss this. It’s strange, leaving to start a whole new life in a whole new city, and then coming back to a sense of familiarity. That’s what I miss: familiarity. I have always been one of those people who are reluctant to verge out of their comfort zone, undeniably content with a rhythmic, habitual life revolving around friends, books and tea.  I would never have thought that I’d be one of the only people from my high school to decide on a university far from home, in a city I had no connections with. Sudden unfamiliarity is frightening. It’s strange then, coming back. Because I all I can think of is: I miss this.

And here are some of the reasons why.

I miss the intimacy of high school. I miss walking down the narrow hallways, waving to your friends as your rush from one class to another. I miss teachers knowing your name and calling out on you. I miss knowing every nook and cranny of the place you’ve spent four of the most significant years of your life in. I miss saying hello to the same bus driver on the route to school, and smiling at the same cafeteria lady as I deliberate between two equally gruesome lunch options.

I miss the relief of knowing exactly where you can find people you are comfortable with; the faded red paint highlighting my best friend’s locker, that one bench beside the windows that became our habitual meeting spot, the hidden stairwell for private conversations. I miss the teachers who became more than just educators. Teachers you had for one class but who still strike up a conversation with you four years later. Teachers who tell you it’s acceptable to fail sometimes, because mistakes are the best way to learn. Teachers whose undeniable passion runs through their veins as they spent tireless hours providing extra help and extracurricular activities for student benefit.

It’s strange, coming back.

Looking back, I remember that most of the people I went to high school with couldn’t wait to leave. They were excited about starting a new life, and taking part in new experiences. Don’t get me wrong: I was too. But I still remember thinking, I don’t want this journey to end. My high school experience was unforgettable: I met some of the most wonderful people in the welcoming halls of Stephen Lewis Secondary. Which is why it’s so hard for me to let go, to completely forget a place that has moulded every aspect of my being.

It’s so strange, coming back.

2 thoughts on “On Coming Back

Add yours

  1. I know what you mean. The biggest difference between high school and university is how lonely things are here. I miss seeing the same people over and over again in classes, because that forced people to be friends with you.
    It’s so lonely here .________.

  2. i know! I miss it too! Here, you introduce yourself to a person one day in class, and it’s near impossible to find them again in a hall of 500 students. 😦

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