As I’ve mentioned in a couple of previous posts, I’m planning on leaving my school and going to the local college to do the International Baccalaureate in September (gulp). That means I’ll be leaving the school that I’ve been at for seven years, since year five, and not taking the conventional route of A Levels but instead studying something that pretty much everybody but my composition teacher and maybe my Spanish teacher has immediately said “oh, that’s meant to be really hard” about when I tell them. Double gulp. I’m planning on taking Spanish, English, Geography, Maths, Biology and Film Studies, all of which feels a bit daunting when I write it down like that. Eek. Maybe I should just stick with A Levels…
On second thoughts, nah.
I’m simultaneously terrified and excited. I’m terrified of the realisation that, provided I do go, I have thirty maths lessons left and then that’s it at school, I’ll be leaving loads of my friends, some of whom I’ve been friends with for a good six or seven years, leaving all the familiarity of a place and routine and teachers that I know and surroundings where I’m comfortable and (mostly) confident. I’ll be leaving everybody in my year, people that you just get used to being around and it’s kinda weird to think that suddenly I’ll go from seeing everyday to having barely any contact with. I’ll be going into the relative unknown that is the IB, as I have no close friends that have done it – the closest I’ve got is a German girl I play hockey with that’s doing it. I’m really scared that after thinking the IB is perfect for me, I’m going to hate it and have to reevaluate my plans and swap to A Levels, either at college or school. I don’t want to leave my two best friends, even though one is going to college too – she’s doing A Levels, and I’ll only get about two free periods each week, so it’s going to be hard to see her. I don’t want to leave the endless maths bants (using that word ironically only promise)(maybe) with my other best friends where we insult each other so incessantly that I think our teacher may think we actually hate each other. Actually, thinking about it, a similar thing’s starting to happen in English…
But I’m excited too. When I got my offer, I was about a million times happier than I expected to be. I kinda just want to fast forward through GCSEs and results and everything and land on the first day of college and just see what it’s like. I honestly think the IB is the right choice for me, because whenever I think about leaving all my friends I still want to go to college. I’m looking forward to the freedom of a different schedule, a bigger campus, a new subject (film studies), more extracurricular music and making new friends (even though that feels terrifying), and meeting new people and kinda having the opportunity to get rid of the assumptions that people who’ve known me since primary school might have and just be the version of me that I want to be. The chance to kinda reinvent myself, I guess. I’m semi-looking forward to the possibility of seeing old, old, pre-year-five primary school friends or maybe ending up being college friends with people I already know outside of school through hockey or music or whatever.
I don’t think I’ve ever thought about September so far in advance, not even when I was choosing GCSEs. Maybe when I swapped primary schools?
I guess it’s the same for any kind of change – you’ve got to take the plunge and hope for the best. I definitely think leaving is right for me – I feel like if I stay I’ll just be constantly wondering what college would have been like, and at least two and probably more of my friends are leaving school anyway, so it’s not like everyone else will be carrying on the same without me. New people will join, too.
Ah well. What will be will be. And at least, even if I bail on the IB after the first week, I can tell myself I tried it and it just didn’t work out. Oh, and all the decision making has forced me to research the college so much that I can regurgitate a lot of information about it, the IB, the different option choices and the difference between taking subjects at standard of higher level very easily, and I’m sure that’s a skill that will be constantly coming in handy later in life.
This song is 100% me right now with GCSEs, big decisions, and life in general.
Are you having to make any big decisions about *further education* at the moment?