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Dear Seniors of 2021

Published online: May 10, 2021 Articles, Education And Arts, Lifestyle Erin Nazario
Viewed 4534 time(s)

Dear Seniors,

This year was to be your year. It was supposed to be your year of unforgettable memories—fun times at the football games, basketball and volleyball games. The year you were going to attend every dance possible because it would be your last year. The year you were finally going to audition for the school play or district musical because it was on your high school bucket list.  

Instead, it was a year of masks, uncertainty, empty bleachers and empty stands, distance learning without classmates, canceled concerts and events, and underground dances that not all students were permitted to attend. 

That sucks. 

It is okay to be upset and disappointed. You are allowed to feel those feelings. But do not dwell in that disappointment. Do not live there for long. It was a hard year, but a year of so many life lessons that will serve you well as you begin the next chapters of your lives.

As you look back on your senior year and what you learned in the midst of this worldly mess, I hope you learned to find the joy in the small things.

I hope you laughed more and loved more with your family—I am sure they realize how precious this time with you has been and are grateful they had more time with you than expected.

I hope you found a creative way to express your thoughts and emotions in a way you never even thought possible.

I hope you found some peace in this storm and learned how to calm any anxieties.

I hope you had time to slow down and eat a few more dinners with your parents and grandparents.

I hope you picked up a new skill or hobby.

I hope you lost yourself in a world of characters you found in a good book.

I hope you found ways to stay connected to your friends when you may not have been able to see them at school.

I hope you have learned to seize opportunity and not take it for granted.

I hope you have learned how NOT to behave in this world by watching all of the political garbage that transpired.  

I hope you have learned to do and be better than what humanity demonstrated this last year.

I hope you have learned compassion and empathy for your neighbors and community, and no matter how awful you have seen others behave, you have learned that kindness and love is what truly matters in life.

I hope you have found humor and opportunities to laugh at yourself.

I hope you have learned how to accept challenges and work through them with dignity.

I hope you found a new strength in yourself that you never knew you had. It is this strength that will take you so incredibly far in this world.  

This year looked very different from what you had imagined or planned, but I truly believe it has prepared you for hard things. You still have so much to look forward to in life, and so much opportunity. Continue to rise above this last year. Continue to move forward, even if there are times when you need to take a few steps back and readjust your plans. You should all be experts at that by now. More than anyone, I think the class of 2021 will know how to roll with the punches and adapt to change with positivity and integrity—such a valuable skill to possess. 

So congratulations. Congratulations for navigating your way through a very tough last year. Congratulations for doing so with grace and beauty. Congratulations for making the best of a bad situation. Congratulations on your graduation. I hope your future is brighter than ever, and you continue to shine fiercely.

With much love and sincerity, 

Erin Nazario

Click here to read the May issue of Idaho Falls Magazine


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