Tuesday, 1 September 2015

For and Against: The End of the Summer Holiday Era

As the days continue to head towards Friday - otherwise known in my world as the official end of summer - I'm sort of trying to come to terms with several things which will almost certainly disappear as soon as I walk through my school's gates in three days' time:

1) No more 'let's-play-on-my-phone-for-half-an-hour-in-order-to-walk-my-half-asleep-self-up' lie-ins which, despite often leaving me more tired than I would usually feel because of staring at an electronic screen (a device that has an ironic way of draining you of energy like excessive usage on a phone sucks all of the battery dry), I will sorely miss. I mean, what is more enjoyable than waking up to images of Kim Kardashian spilling out of her oh-so-tight dress at ten in the morning - this is something that never ever happens during term-time, so I obviously want to make the most of it while it lasts! For, um, another two mornings...

2) To the disgust of my inner fashionista, I will have to return to wearing a horribly clear nail polish from Friday because my school states that coloured nail polish, along with hair dyes, are against the 'rules'. Well, considering that half of my year have dyed their hair at one point (including some of the boys, one of which transformed himself into a Black Sabbath tribute act upon apparently having a 'disaster' with a packet of black hair dye), I find it ridiculous that I can't even wear a subtle, chic and professional-looking pinky nude shade on my nails while others are essentially given permission to emulate the cast members of The Only Way is Essex in their school uniforms. Totally not what I consider to be the concept of fairness!!!

Therefore, I will shed one or two heartfelt tears when I finally take off my gorgeous black nail polish - the very first time that I've ever worn it, which only worsens the psychological agony of having to expose it to the revoltingly scented nail polish remover - because I will have to wait until the October half-term to paint my nails another colour once again. Just why?! Such cruelty is definitely unfair, I must admit; over the course of this summer, I have rediscovered my passion for nail polish, trying favourite colours such as bloodthirsty red and Starbucks-esque taupe browns, in addition to experimenting with gun-metal greys and, currently, gothic blacks. Now that my eyes have been exposed to a Dulux variety of colours, my heart begs to not return to my former existence as a clear-painted girl - life is simply not vibrant without an injection of colour!!!

Just another of life's many injustices!

3) Jeans. Whether dark, stormy blue, baby pink or grunge-inspired grey, I have absolutely loved wearing jeans on pretty much a daily basis over the past six weeks, especially as I have finally broken in my new grey pair after many rather agonising attempts! No longer am I struggling to yank my feet out of the jeans like I was before the summer holidays commenced; personally, I don't think that there is a better feeling than wearing a pair of greatly fitted jeans.

Ah, if only the same could be said about my blazer which, despite fitting significantly better than the one I used to wear at my old school, still has the effect of making me feel like a Year 7: as soon as I place it onto my shoulders, I instantly forget that I'm indeed 16 years old, not a mere eleven year old about to start their first day at the so-called 'terrifying' secondary school.

At least jeans make me feel like I'm my age and, unless I pick up a pair in the wrong size, they fit me perfectly - unless my blazer miraculously shrinks over the course of Year 11, I very much doubt that I will feel any older than a Year 7!

4) Lunch - how will I ever cope with all-day access to the fridge?! I once had to tear myself away from my kitchen's cupboards after ending my seven year stint as a home-schooled student, which was more than painful enough, yet I somewhat feel like I'm having to repeat this over a year on: letting go of what you truly love is never easy, as I'm coming to realise at this very moment.

Even though I'm fortunate to have a packed lunch over the measly-looking school dinners that some of my friends eat (and sometimes don't finish off), eating at school is never the same as it is at home: no amount of persuasive words can change my thoughts otherwise. As a renowned slow eater, I often pressurise myself into eating my lunch ridiculously quickly - which, if you ate at a normal pace, you would probably consider to be a normal pace - so that my friends wouldn't waste half of their lunch time waiting for me to finish my reasonably small roll, let alone my box of raisins and baby cucumbers (which many people mistake for pickles, which I absolutely detest!). As a result, I often feel like I haven't enjoyed my lunch as much as I appreciate the meals I consume at home because giving myself the time to savour every mouthful is important to me: otherwise, I would prefer to have not eaten a thing at all as I don't gain an ounce of pleasure from it.

Thankfully, I've been able to return to doing what I do best - obviously devoting ten whole minutes of my life to polish off a slice of plain wholemeal toast - since the holidays began, which has encouraged me to really appreciate my lunchtimes once again. Because of this, I've now decided to not panic five minutes before I head out to school in the morning and stuff crackers into my lunch bag so that I don't risk getting hungry; deep down, I know that I won't value it because I'll only gobble it down quickly in between classes, so it's only worth having it when I'm at home.

Despite the inevitability of missing several things about the summer holidays, I haven't forgotten the many positive aspects of returning to school which, in many ways, have stopped me from dreading the upcoming year - such emotions shouldn't blight what would be a great start to a successful ten months and exam season!

1) Seeing all of my friends - from the ones I've met up with over the holidays or haven't seen since school finished nearly seven weeks ago - on Friday will be brilliant because we will hopefully have plenty to talk about. Such as, did you dye your hair? (to my friend S, who dyed her hair purple - yes, I'm really not joking - early on in the holidays), have you gotten taller? (one of my friends is still awaiting her growth spurt as the shortest, but certainly the loudest member of the group) and maybe did it hurt? to me, in reference to my helix piercing (which I'll definitely be concealing from any watchful teachers!).

Still, bearing in mind that majority of teenagers my age mostly revolve their lives around Netflix, Facebook, sleep and stocking up on cans of Pepsi from Asda, maybe my friends and I won't have much to talk about. Anyway, I won't mind because I'll be so glad to be hanging out with them again!

2) No more days of wondering what the hell I should do; despite my best efforts, I have struggled to keep myself entertained over the holidays because my ideas of fun don't really go beyond binge-watching episodes of True Blood on rainy mornings and day-dreaming about how to bake a cake as perfect as the ones featured on The Great British Bake-Off. Therefore, I'll be so pleased to be occupied in my lessons because engaging in activities makes me happy, especially when I gain a new skill or learn something new; I find such experiences are so liberating! Well, bring on the two thousand word Performing Arts essays once again...

3) After much pleading and complaining, I persuaded my mum to purchase a new skirt for me because my old one was way too big on my waist which, because of its looseness, I felt the need to roll it up so that the risk of letting it slide onto my knees was minimised. Since toning up over the holidays, my old skirt fits even worse, so purchasing a new, better-fitted one became an urgent necessity.

Although you could argue that I won't have the benefit of a whole school year to wear a skirt, comfort comes over worrying about whether my skirt could fall below my hips, which is one concern that I needn't fret over. And, to top things off, I've got the loveliest new shoes that have black bows on them, adding quite the feminine touch that my previous shoes lacked; as I'm not overly obsessed with shoes, I can't resist getting excited about wearing my new pair. At least one of my fashionista's needs has been catered for - she might complain about her nails, but you can't deny that her feet are looking great!

There are many other reasons that I could list, but that's not necessary; despite yearning for relaxation to last, I'm ready to push that aside in favour for the new year. So, what does that mean for me? As I'm heading into Year 11, my academic life will symbolise exams, revision, coursework and controlled assessments until all of the hard work has been completed by mid-June next year.

Am I afraid? Apart from Maths, which I will definitely improve on because I'd like to achieve more than the absolute minimum to pass, I have few fears about my exams, especially as I've given myself the benefit of another year to perfect my techniques and abilities.

As my studies and precious free time come first, please don't be surprised if I keep quiet on the blogging front - there is no doubt that I will be writing plenty at school, so my inner writer will remain fit! I'd love to carry on blogging, but I'm not bothered if I don't post entries as frequently as I usually do; life is life, and sometimes it needs to be experienced before you write about it. Just think, I'll have more than plenty to discuss by the times all of my exams are over, so my inspiration will build up into a beautiful masterpiece!

With just three days to go, I shall relax, sleep and appreciate my little time left at home; OK, I'm still going to be living at home, but it's obviously different when you spend much more time away from it! Nevertheless, I'm ready to return to routine: well, why shouldn't I be?

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