Very rarely do people look back at their high school years and think.. mehh. You either love, or hate high school, there is no grey area, no in between. But personally, I have mixed feelings – I absolutely loved my four years in high school, they weren’t my best, but they absolutely were a great time. It also helps when you go to an all girls private high school too. At first thought, to most people that probably sounds like a nightmare. All girls. Private. Catholic. High school. And to maybe some, it is a complete nightmare. But I will be the first to tell you, I’ve learned some invaluable lessons during my four years at Notre Dame High School.
“Ora et labora”. The school motto is Latin for “work and pray”. But to be honest, it took me a while to realize that its not “work and PLAY”. I don’t know what I was thinking. We work and play every day? Sounds right? Either way, it’s taught me a good sense of balance in my life.
Clothes aside, everyone’s true self is a slob. We wore uniforms every day. When everyones wearing the same thing at a single sex environment, you find it hard to care what you look like. Mis matched socks, hooodies, tights, birkenstocks with socks… my high school was probably the birthplace to IDGAF. All that mattered was the name on the front of your sweatshirt…. no really… you HAD to wear a NDB sweatshirt or else. But seriously, tell me another place in America where Birkenstocks with socks, valor blue sweatpants, skorts, and moccasins are not only acceptable but happily embraced? Tell me! I’m waiting…
A bad hair day isn’t going to ruin your day. Every day of my four years at Notre Dame High school was a bad hair day. I sported like 5 different hair cuts, 3 different hair colors, and rocked the messy ponytail like it was nobodys business. Nowadays, my day is over if the wind messes with my hair, or if the rain dampens my ‘do. But then I think about the days when running a brush through my hair was next to never, and my staple was a ponytail… and everything is all good… it could be worse.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder. HAHA who am I kidding. The absence of males just made us all crazy fools. In college we all started our first classes, wide-eyed, drooling, in complete awe… THERES BOYS?! You’d think you were in a male anatomy class instead.
The bigger the fool, the cooler you are. We all embraced our inner nerd / dork / loser / freak / weirdo in these four years. Notre Dame girls – I’m sure you look back at your tagged photos and see pictures from MORP or Dingbat Day or AQUACADES or various spirit week pictures and cringe. But here’s the thing: You cringe and part of you hates it (what you looked like, what a freak you were and WHAT IN ST. JULIE B’S NAME ARE YOU WEARING?!)but the other part – the part deep down inside and closest to you… loves it. Youre saying “Damn I was a badass. I rocked that sh**. I wore that neon leotard like it was no ones business.” You know it.
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Carpeted walls were put there to thicken your skin… obviously. Look at you now. You’re going places.
You will always have your sisters. One thing I realized while I was in high school, and have come to embrace even more so now, is the sisterhood that was built in my years at Notre Dame Belmont. Things change, people change, friends change, you’ve change, I’ve changed… but what remains is the bond that we’ve all created through our four years together. These girls have seen eachother at their highs, lows, best, worst, and have remained a tight knit group even after three years of going our separate ways. I’ve been blessed to see most of you turn into the most amazing, beautiful, lovely individuals that I am proud and happy to call my sisters. I’ve learned invaluable lessons about myself, each one of you, and others that I will always keep close to me.
This weekend we’ve lost a sister, who we will miss deeply. Our love for her will always exist through our love for each other and our community. The past few days have made me all realize how lucky I am to have all of my NDB sisters in my life. Some of you might be aborad, on different coasts of the country, in different places in your life… but we’ll always be uKNIGHTed.
RIP Sheetal & Nisha TandelClick here to donate to the Sheetal & Nisha Tandel Memorial Fund
Feel free to share your favorite NDB memories in the comments below! (I KNOW YOU NDB READERS EXIST)