Beauty and the books: No time for fairytales with full schedules


I am always busy, and I have been since the sixth grade. Over the years, computer classes turned into finishing eight-page essays and hip-hop dance classes turned into practicing that one dance move for show choir. The activities may have changed over time, but the time spent doing them never has. From extracurricular activities to a challenging course load, I am always doing something.

When I talk to adults about college and my work load, most of them advise me to settle for one or two activities. They don’t understand that what they are advising me to do is impossible. I simply cannot quit anything.

When my mother told me that I had to miss a couple blocks at school for a doctor’s appointment, I started to tear up. Yes, I actually did cry over the thought of getting behind in class. No, that probably isn’t normal or healthy.


Columnist Emily. Photo Illustration by Vicki Ackermann

I always complain to my family and friends about how stressed and busy I am, but if we’re going to be realistic about it, it’s really all my fault. I was the one who signed up for six extracurricular activities. I was the one who signed up for four honors classes, one AP class, and three electives without a study hall.

I was the one who over-packed my schedule with meetings, assignments, and practices to the point where missing a day of school is more stressful than walking on a tightrope in heels over the Grand Canyon. It’s all my fault, and I fully take the blame for it, but I will probably never clear my schedule. I love doing what I do, even if it results in a mental breakdown once every two days.

If I am at my peak in life, and if I have enough time, why shouldn’t I do everything I can? I’m not saying that a heavy and compacted schedule and workload is best for everyone, but I don’t know what I would do without it.

It is my personal goal to experience as many new opportunities as possible during my time and to continue taking part in activities that I love. Making the most of my limited time in high school has always been important to me, and it inspires me to do what I enjoy doing, even if it is time-consuming.

Embrace the mental breakdowns on Monday mornings. Own the fact that you haven’t been home for dinner for more than a week straight. Acknowledge the fact that cramming for your math quiz during your lunch block isn’t ideal, but continue to keep convincing yourself that you won’t procrastinate ever again.

Admit to yourself that you broke that promise less than a week later. Accept the fact that your new best friend is caffeine. It may seem overwhelming at times, but the feeling of doing what you love makes it all worth it in the end.

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