Senior Reflection: Kassidy Martinez

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submitted photo

Kassidy Martinez, at age 6, is shown on her last day of kindergarten.

Kassidy Martinez, School News Editor

During my eighth grade graduation, I excitedly went to switch my tassel over to the right side. While doing so, the tassel came off completely. I thought that would be a metaphor for how the next four years would go. 

But for someone whose high school experience began with a curse, I’d say I had a pretty decent run.

At first, high school seemed like a big scary place that sucks the youth right out of you. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Between the exhausting flights of stairs at South, and the confusing spider-like halls of Central, MCHS seemed rather intimidating. 

But in the end, high school made me into the person I have always wanted to be.

Freshman year I was a wanna-be skater punk who would blow off tests and homework. I saw small rock shows at bars with my dad and danced and thrashed around my room to music  like there was no tomorrow. Basically I was the coolest freshman ever. The initial transition from junior high, where you literally only have to show up and graduate, to high school, where you have tests and quizzes every other class period was not something I exactly caught on to. But as much as Minooka teachers are going to hate me for saying this, life is much more fun when you stop caring. No one is truly judging you like you think they are.

Sophomore year I was in the early stages of being an indie kid. I was all yellow, flowers, dresses, Hozier, basically the starter kid to fake indie culture is what I possessed. Sophomore year was an epiphany for pretty much everyone as now, we can drive without adult supervision. I went everywhere with my friends and met a lot of really great people. If there’s anything I learned from that year of my life, it’s that you should put yourself out there more. You never know, even if going to Target to buy a birthday gift with a friend sounds boring, it could be a super fun time. If it wasn’t for sophomore year and what I learned then, I would see the world as one that’s much more boring.

When junior year came along I felt a little lost. Life got a bit overwhelming there for a second. I was a lot more anxious to be around multiple people and it was harder to complete the boatload of work that comes with being a junior. 

However, with each day I found simple ways to relieve myself of negativity. I would stay up all night just dancing with my disco light on, pretending I was at Queen’s Live Aid performance. I would sit in my backyard and admire what was around me. I would call up a friend just to simply get some coffee with them and chat. Junior year opened my eyes and made me realize that there’s so much around me to appreciate!

Me, being fresh off that junior year mentality, I was a force going into senior year. My whole mentality was “I’m never seeing these people again after this! I’m gonna buy a pair of six inch platform boots and show up to school with rhinestones on my eyes!” 

Aside from my weird burst of confidence going into senior year, I felt a bit strange encountering my last year of school. I had no clue if I was ready to become an adult, and the thought of that scared me. I still have an American Girl doll on my dresser, and I’m going to college? It all seemed so fast. 

Everyone was in the same boat as me, though. All my friends are branching off into different careers and colleges. Everyone is preparing to leave the district they spent their whole lives in. So I took absolutely none of it for granted and lived senior year the best way I could imagine. Worry-free, and satisfied. 

My time at Minooka definitely was not the easiest, but I will always remember the great people I’ve met, great educators I’ve encountered and great memories I have lived. I now feel ready to move on to this next chapter in my life, and enjoy it.