Sloane Heffernan: The lost year
Posted September 23, 2021 9:30 a.m. EDT
Updated September 24, 2021 10:05 a.m. EDT
Looking back on my difficult high school years, I would have gladly skipped a year of school.
So when school closed due to Covid in the spring of 2020, I felt a strange sense of relief for my oldest son who was then a freshman in high school. I wanted to protect him from the pandemic, but I also felt the urge to protect him from some of the misery I felt in high school.
I went to a large high school and I got lost. Not literally, in an unable to find my way around the halls sense, but my grades were bad, and my attitude was even worse. I was a bit of an outcast. (If you don’t believe me, check out my student ID).
I would beat myself up mentally over perceived shortcomings, and I was beat up physically more than once.
Without realizing it, I was projecting my fears onto my son.
As he spent his entire sophomore year in virtual learning from his bedroom, I realized how much he was missing by not being in class and not spending time with his peers. When he finally went back to school this fall, I was excited and nervous to see him go.
He came home happy! He shared funny stories from the cafeteria and talked about interesting class discussions. He made the soccer team, and he has been making new friends. His grades are good, and his spirits are high.
While he lost more than a year of school, he’s found a much better experience than I had at that age. And for that, I am grateful, and I hope that he doesn’t have to miss another day!