Seniors missed a lot, but got some unique memories

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Image by Purbalite staff

Purbalite seniors evaluate their fours years of high school at Baldwin .

Lindsay Bonetti, News Editor

When the dismissal bell rang on March 13, 2020, every junior was celebrating two weeks off from arguably the hardest year of high school. Then when we could tell that extra-long spring break did not have a swift end in sight, we were secretly glad that it was the Class of 2020 who lost their big end-of-senior-year moments and not us.

Little did we know that we would be the ones to get the worst of it. 

With switches to online and hybrid learning, school days as we knew them for the last 12 years were no longer. Nearly a year went by before we saw half of the people in our grade — people we had been used to seeing every single day. 

Emptier classes, one-way hallways, and distanced seating took away the bustling energy that used to fill the school. Rows of single desks replaced the chance to sit in booths with our friends in the senior-exclusive North Cafeteria. 

But now we stop for a moment longer and admire the golden-pink sunrises over the football field while walking down to school from the student lot. ”

No planning themes and watching the beet-red faces of an unfortunate pair of underclassmen who we picked for the Kiss Cam while leading the student section at home Friday night football games. 

No final homecoming or snowball school dances put an end to the next-day debates over the worst song of the night. I guess we will never know if “Dance Monkey” by Tones and I would have beaten the united groans when “Cheerleader” by OMI came on.

No fans to cheer us on at many of our last performances or sports games ever. 

Having to decide where to go to college by looking at staged pictures, not by tours.

I cannot lie. It was sad that we did not have the cliché, coming-of-age movie type of senior year memories. However, the Class of 2021 will carry many unique ones with us that we should hold dear.

Anytime our children and grandchildren ask us about our time in high school will undoubtedly be met with a chuckling, “Oh, do I have a story for you.”

We will look back on the awkward Google Meet silence with laughter, picking out face masks to match our outfits with bittersweet nostalgia, and the open-note tests and SAT-optional college applications with gratefulness.

Next time our parents start their exaggerated complaints of how they walked uphill in the pouring rain for three miles to school, we can finally one-up them. We went through a whole global pandemic while in school. It will be hard to beat that.

We have learned to adapt and overcome, forced into maturity in ways that no other class on the brink of entering the real world ever has been. 

Finding out the hard way about taking normal life for granted was not easy. But now we stop for a moment longer and admire the golden-pink sunrises over the football field while walking down to school from the student lot. 

This year has been about making the most of the small things. Because soon enough it will all be over and gone. 

Our senior year may not be exactly like we fantasized about as children, but it sure has been a memorable one. 

Plus, if we’re lucky, we could be the only ones at our colleges in the fall who will have a normal four-year experience again.