Senior reflection: time flies


Photo courtesy Maya Seiler

Now senior Maya Seiler works during lunch on her last in-person day of school: March 13, 2020.

I remember my neighbor, whose children had graduated from Wootton, told me when I finished middle school that I would be graduating from high school in a heartbeat. After four years with three seasons per school year, about two years of a pandemic and a “heartbeat” later, it’s time to graduate.

Between accumulating class hours and volunteering, holidays and snowy delays, time seems to slip through our fingers. We see time moving too slowly when we present in front of the class, yet too quickly when we try to embrace every last minute of lunch or get hooked into a book. In high school, time seems to have a movement of its own. At moments, it makes us worry if we are making the most of it. 

I’m sure you’ve heard thousands of times not to compare your chapter one to someone else’s chapter 20. As AP and SAT/ACT exams awaited, and college application season crept around the corner, I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders to pack my daily schedule with advanced classes, volunteer opportunities and sport and job commitments in order to be like my fellow classmates. As much as I was overjoyed by the contributions I made toward my extracurricular activities and higher scores in my classes, I was defeated by the overwhelming stress I had to maintain those successes, despite disliking certain activities. This made me realize the value of avoiding comparing myself to others, a nearly impossible task to handle. But it also made me not count how much I did in my time as a high school student, but rather, how much of my time was spent doing activities and being with people that made me want to be my best self.

While virtual learning made us all lose countless academic and social opportunities, I could not be more thankful for the ways that it made me realize how precious this time is in the school building. It made me want to do exactly what I mentioned: I began to focus on the people and activities that made me happiest in my senior year, while reducing or closing out my time with those I simply grew out of or that did not spark joy. Without being in the presence of the staff and fellow students in learning, the pulse of spirit days and the excitement of seeing my friends in the halls, it made me more grateful than ever for those times that have continued this year up until this point. I’m relieved to say that when I look back at an album of pictures on my phone or the boxes of class notes in my closet, I will be instantly reminded of the precious time I took to make meaningful memories and gain knowledge. Just as Hannah Montana once said, “The times that we had, I’ll keep like a photograph.”