This one is for the overachievers. It’s for the students who always did well in school; who would bring home worksheets with gold stars and green ticks. To the students who have report cards full of comments like ‘Adam is a bright student’ and ‘Amy demonstrates a dedicated attitude to her learning’. This is for the students who spent their primary schools days ahead of the rest, earning awards and achievements that their parents fawned over.

This is for the students who transitioned into high school and kept cruising through, getting full marks on assignments and topping the class in exams. The students who always did their homework on time and got started early on the work the teachers set.

This is for the students who realised when they hit their final years of high school that maybe they couldn’t keep up. The students who found out that the demands of Year 12 and all the pressures that came with it were a bit too much.

This is for the students who are expected to be acing everything, even though all they want to do is give up.

I know how you feel. I know what it’s like to do well in school for so long and to have your parents see you as a top student. And I know what it’s like to get a point where you are done.

I know how you can get to the point where all the pressure becomes too much and you start to struggle with the workload. That point where you don’t get top marks on an exam and feel like a failure. The point where you know everyone wants you to do better and be the best, but you’re struggling to keep up to their standards.

This is for the students that were told they were high achievers their whole life only to get so close to the finish line and realise that they’re running the same race as everyone else. This is for the ones who are expected to go to uni, and study ‘smart’ degrees like law or medicine or engineering, even though you know you don’t want to.

Let me tell you that it’s okay to feel like you’re over it all; all the pressure and the stress. It’s okay to want to give up but  not want to let anyone down. It’s okay to feel like there’s no way you’re going to be able to live up to everyone’s expectations but also know you can’t push yourself anymore.

You’re going to come out of this. You’re going to sit your exams and hand in your assignments. You’re going to finish off the school year and figure out what you’re going to do. Your marks are going to come out but you are still going to be the same person- whether you flunk or ace it, your mark doesn’t define who you are.

@christinamca

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