Junior year, what a rush! I get butterflies in my stomach knowing that next year will be my last. I’m going to rule the school, I’ll be at the top of the food chain! Of course, there are obstacles junior year: SATs and starting the whole college search. I’m aiming for scholarships and though I’m not as confident as I would like to be about the SATs, I am studying every weekend. I’m ecstatic at the thought of college, with a minor side effect of being a bit scared. It’s a chance I’m willing to take.
When I think of college, I think independence! I want to attend a college near a city like Boston. I went there for a college fair with friends and it was quite an experience. I rode the subway for the first time, which was obvious to the other riders since I didn’t grab the pole and as a result tumbled onto the person next to me. The subway passed through the city, which was breathtaking. I was constantly nudging my friend and pointing at the buildings. That was when I fell in love.
Growing up, I was very sheltered. I only saw cities in movies or on TV. The main reason I went to Boston was to go to the college fair, but I also discovered where I want to spend my college life: in a city just like Boston, or Boston itself.
When I got home I was very excited to tell my dad where I wanted to go to college but he looked at me like I didn’t understand life. He told me that college life in Boston included violence, drugs and rape. In other words, it was way out of my league. He said that the life I had pictured was impossible: it was a fairy tale, and only that. This felt like a blow to me and the tears stung my eyes making me see the reality of life. I have to take off my rose-colored glasses and place them in a box, locking them up in my closet of fairy-tale dreams.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.