Line Up by Emily Young

Welcome families, teachers, parents, and, most importantly, my friends, the class graduates of 2018. Can you believe it? 4 years ago, we were the startled freshman that were roaming these hallways like lost puppies, and today we take our last walk through as students here at Berkeley Springs High School. Bottle flipping, defined eyebrows, Nike sweatpants, Trap rap music and especially athletes, laughter and happiness. Those are what our class is made of. We finally made it. Jocks, nerds, beauty queens, athletes, we all finally made it. High school graduation. Today is the first day of the rest of our lives. It’s crazy how one piece of paper sends us into adulthood.

    Like many of my classmates, I have dreaded and dreamed of this day. But, like everything else, we must move on. Bigger, greater things are ahead for all of us.

    This night means many different things for different graduates. To some it might bring triumph, to some it may bring relief, and to some it may bring undeniable happiness. For some, it may bring all of those.

    There is no guarantee that life after graduation will be easy, but I know everyone seated in front of me earned it, and every one of us graduates deserves to be successful. There will be dark days ahead, we all know that. They are inescapable, and we are not immortal. Positive mindsets, though, can always get us through those dark, dreaded days.  

       There is a universal truth we all have to face, whether we want to or not. Not everything lasts forever, and, man, do things change. Personally, I have always hated endings. Today is the first big end of something for us. Everything we knew, everything we were comfortable with, flies out the window after we walk across that short 20 foot stage. It’s our time. Our time to go out of our comfort zones, and to find ourselves. To figure out who we are, and what we were put on this Earth to do, and what we are suppose to accomplish. Today is the first day of the rest of our lives.

    These past 4 years were definitely the best years of my life, so far. There are many, many more great years to come. We may be parting ways for now, but we will always be in each others hearts. We spent the first 18 years of our lives together.

    After tonight, we are all going to be so busy with college move-in days, leaving for basic, or doing whatever all of us plan on doing for the rest of our lives. But for tonight, let us just slow down, and take in all of this greatness. We made it. For the first time, we can actually say we made it. This is one of the saddest, but also happiest days of our lives. It’s crazy how one can feel so many emotions at one time.

    Through the smiles, laughs, tears, and sadness. We made it.

    Congratulations to the Class of 2018. I wish the best of luck to every one of us.

    Let the adventure of life begin.  

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