the final & beginning chapters

Well, its finally here. The final days of this beautiful summer…but before I begin to soak my keyboard with tears as I write about all the “goodbyes” I’ve said lately, I wanna reflect on what a great summer this was and  write a little bit about the amount we’ve all had to grow up in such a short amount of time.

From a summer kick-off trip to palm springs with two of my very best friends, to the two-week family vacation to Michigan Zack & I just came home from, this summer has just been the perfect mix of everything. The perfect amount of time with family, a little extra time spent on working & preparing for school and this new chapter of life; but, of course, there could never be enough time with my friends before we depart on separate paths for college.

I can honestly say that high school was one of the most fun times of my life. From freshman year to senior year, I journeyed through classes and teachers, friends and groups and tons of learning experiences. It wasn’t until I had completely settled into my own skin during my senior year that I felt like all the seeds I had planted  my first 3 years of high school were finally beginning to bloom. The fruits of my labor on school work and the  constant molding of myself was finally beginning to show. Once I settled into who I really was and found my  true friends (cliche, I know) my year just blossomed. My friends and I had such a fun-filled year and I know without a shadow of a doubt we soaked up every single minute of it. I think that’s why it is such a tough goodbye for us this fall. Not because we’ve been friends for years, but because this is the first chapter of our lives that we are embarking on without having each other holding our hand every step of the way.

I am fortunate enough to say the vast majority of my best friends are not going out of state for school. However, I’ve come to the conclusion that miles don’t really mean much to me. I have friends that live far away  that kept in better contact with me than some friends I was going to school with at the time. I think location obviously makes a difference when it comes to how often I will be able to see my friends, but no matter how far away one is, all it takes is something as small as a daily text or a weekly phone call to keep a friendship in tact. This next season of life is going to be all about being intentional. I have to be intentional about keeping my friendships healthy, intentional about working hard at work and school, intentional about my relationship with Zack as he leaves (trust me, our goodbye will have its very own post!) and of course, intentional about keeping God first through this crazy new chapter.

So, in conclusion, we wont be having sleepovers every Friday night where we stay up and talk about all of our weeks, or freaking out about finding a prom dress & date in time for the dance. We wont be carpooling to football games or killing ourselves during Broadway practice; no more spirit week or dress up days…no more of a lot of things. I think its such a tough goodbye because unlike the people that hated high school, we’ve got so much to lose. We’re losing each other’s constant and consistent company. We’re losing our high school traditions. But yet, though we are losing so much, we have SO much to gain. New friends, new experiences, and a whole lot of growing up.

Though these next few days are going to be full of tears and farewells, I hold on tightly to the memories I’ve made with these beautiful, wonderful people. Not just this summer, but senior year and every day that led up to it.

heres to our past & to beginning our future. 

xo,

Toni

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