By: Christine Infantolino
Throughout high school there have been many unexpected elements that made this experience unique. My high school experience could be described in many words, but as I look back on it the first thing that comes to mind is short-lived. Coming into James Caldwell High School freshman year feels like a memory not too far back. Sitting down writing a reflection feels bittersweet because although I complain about coming to school I will miss it. It feels surreal that I will not be completing a summer assignment this year and getting my schedule and exchanging prayers that I have classes with my friends. My summer will no longer be consumed with summer volleyball practices and spending all my time with my high school friends.
As I look back I see a large gap from March of my sophomore year to the start of my senior year. Covid-19 played such a large role in my high school experience in losing special years that I would have wanted to spend at the school and not at home on a screen. Doing online school was probably the most pointless thing I have done, it took away all the enjoyable parts of being a student at James Caldwell High School. Seeing my friends in person versus seeing my friends on a computer was a very depleting part of high school. Throughout quarantine I was just going through the motions all the days blended together. Going to online classes followed by the same redundant schedule. It felt as if it was a never ending cycle.
Luckily my senior year has been rather normal and I feel that I have gotten the whole experience this year. I got to have a normal volleyball season for the last time ever which I could not have been happier about because this year we won the Essex County Tournament. Over the years I wish I had appreciated and enjoyed my time here more because I did not realize how quickly it would come to a close. I have met so many amazing friends and I would not doubt that I will continue to have these friends for the rest of my life. Throughout participating in high school sports and clubs I feel that I had a wide variety of friends who I am so grateful I got the chance to meet and get to know better.
The teachers at JCHS have been some of the best memories I have had being a student here. Some of the bonds I have created with my teachers I will remember forever and I am so glad to have met them. I am very thankful for all the experiences I have had at James Caldwell High School and I would not trade these experiences for anything. I have learned so much throughout my time at this school and I have found myself and discovered who I want to be as a person. I have seen such large development from myself on the first day of freshman year and flash forward to now graduating in a couple weeks. High School is always so glorified, as I was growing up I thought High School would be just like the movies. I religiously watched High School Musical in hopes of having that picture perfect experience. My younger self would be disappointed in the lack of song and dance but, today I feel at peace with what I have accomplished over the years.