7 years. 7 years of tears, stress, happiness, anger, fall outs and break ups, boyfriends and best friends. Ultimately, 7 years that I will never forget. Here are 7 things I have learnt from my 7 year stint in secondary education that came to an end on Monday. (Could I say 7 any more times…)

Capture Everything: Back in 2008 when I started school when the days of Instagram and Twitter didn’t exist, I rarely took photos of what went on in my life (apart from the odd horrendous ‘selfie’). Looking back now I really regret doing that, as much as I have memories of what went on back then, I have very few photos that I can look back on and I’ve learnt that photos are everything, not only can they be incredibly funny (as the few that I had were), their a good point of reference of how much you’ve changed. The people you were with, the clothes you wore, what you looked like, almost every aspect of your life; which leads me onto my next point.

Things Change: Whether it be people, fashion trends, your friends, your hair colour, your clothes, anything. Things change; some can be prevented, some just happen and I’ve learnt that it’s important to accept that. I’m not the best at dealing with change and I often made it my mission to prevent things from changing. That was until I realised that all the time I was trying to focus on stopping from one thing changing, I was missing out on everything going on around me at the same time. Sometimes change is for the better, as much as we might not think it is at the time.

Regret nothing….well not everything…: As much as some things may seem incredibly stupid at the time (and I learnt that 90% of the time they were) I found that it was important not to regret anything. It changes you as a person and makes you who you are. You can learn from your mistakes but also from your successes and if you spend your life regretting something from the past, then you prevent yourself from creating a future.

Time flies. Seriously: This applies more to Sixth Form but also parts of school as a whole. I remember being in Year 11 getting ready to go into sixth form and we were given advice from the soon to be leaving Year 13s and one thing that they always said is that they will be the quickest two years of your life. And my god were they right. It’s crazy how quickly the past two years have gone, they have honest to god flown by.

I’m old: I’m a September baby so I’ve grown up being one of the oldest in the year every year but I didn’t realise quite how old I was until I got to secondary school. Some of my best friends are almost an entire year younger than me?! And what makes it worse is that some of my friends aren’t even 18 yet and here I am turning 20 next year! I’m not old enough to be 20..

Have fun: As much as being in school is predominantly about being in education, it is almost more important to have fun whilst doing it. It’s important to find a balance.

It’s all worth it in the end: One thing that I wish I had been told before starting school, more so before sixth form is that things do get better. You might think that at the time, something is the be all and end all, you spend hours and hours crying and stressing (well at least I did anyway) over something that when put into perspective, is actually pretty small. Exams are hard. There is no doubt about that, but the feeling of finishing them and seeing how much work you have done has paid of is genuinely worth it in the end.

There you have it, 7 things from 7 years. I started school as a quiet, boyish looking, socially awkward human being and as I am writing this post, I am a loud, more girly looking, slightly less socially awkward human being. I hope that whether you’re just about to start secondary education in September, or you are like me and are saying goodbye for now, that you have enjoyed this slightly rambly reflective post of mine! DSCN2884P1000023


TOP: First School Photo (l) Year 6 Prom (r) BOTTOM: Year 13 Leaver’s Ball