Jillian Cantor is the 2009 debut author of The September Sisters, which is wonderful! She is also the author of the upcoming 2010 release, The Life of Glass. Here she is telling us about what she wished she knew when she was sixteen.
When I was sixteen I was very worried about school. I was a junior and I worried about getting good grades, getting into a good college, and getting a good score on my SATs. I think if I knew then what I knew now, I’d have to say that I wouldn’t have worried about these things so much. Of course, school is important, but I should’ve relaxed a little bit, taken some more time to enjoy life rather than being so stressed about school all the time.
For one thing, at this point in my life, 15 years later, I cannot tell you what my SAT score was. Really, I have no idea in the slightest. I think I did well. I don’t remember being upset about it, so I probably did. But for the life of me, I couldn’t give you an actual number right now. What I do remember, is that sick feeling I had in my stomach worrying about the test.
I also remember my horrid 11th grade math class, Analysis, that I did not do well in. I was SO upset because I thought for sure that this class would tarnish my record of good grades in my other classes and effect the rest of my life. I worried about my grade in that class constantly, all year long, to the point of feeling sick about it. Ok. I can tell you with all certainty, that nothing I learned (or didn’t) in that analysis class has had any effect on anything I’ve done since. I’m also having a very hard time recalling what analysis even is right now. On the rare occasions where math is required in my life, I use a calculator, and that’s pretty much all I needed to get out of high school math!
So I guess my point is that doing well in school is important, but I wish I hadn’t been so stressed about every single little thing. Every grade. Every test. It all felt so enormous, like it would have such an impact on my life. I’m glad I did well in school, and that opened up a lot of opportunities for me afterwards, but I also think I missed out on some of the fun of high school. And besides, there are plenty of opportunities to stress yourself out after high school. I still find them. Constantly! Hmmm. . . maybe I should take my own advice?
Happy Birthday, Hope!
Thanks, Jillian! Come back later for a chance to win a signed copy of The September Sisters.