I’m Just Extremely Grateful

Cate Morgan, Columnist

I know you’ve probably seen a billion posts by a billion seniors at this point, but I feel like I need to say my piece to truly come to terms with everything that’s going on. I’ve sat and thought a lot about exactly what I’m feeling and exactly how I wanted to say it all. I know a lot of seniors out there are feeling sad and frustrated, and while the feeling of disappointment has come to me briefly I haven’t cried at all. Which if you know me, you know that I cry over things much smaller than all of this, whether it be a pre-calc quiz I think I failed or a cheesy kids movie, I’ve cried over meaningless things more then I’m willing to admit.

But slowly, over these past couple days I’ve realized why I haven’t shed a single tear over something that I thought would have me bawling my eyes out for days. I came to this conclusion: Sure, I’m disappointed over all the events and “lasts” that I’m missing out on, but over all of that I’ve realized that I’m just extremely grateful.

I’m grateful for having met my life long best friend. I’m grateful for performing a cheesy musical about pirates. I’m grateful for learning how to play those squeaky recorders. I’m grateful for writing letters to famous people and hoping for a response. I’m grateful for going to adventure land. I’m grateful for going to see that awful one women show. I’m grateful for doing football picks with Ben in choir before every football game. I’m grateful for our school picnics. I’m grateful for all the bad student teachers we’ve had. I’m grateful for every school dance. I’m grateful for every high-five Colter has given me in the hallways. I’m grateful for petting Mrs. Gunn’s iguanas. I’m grateful for sitting in the school parking lot late at night with friends and just talking.

I’m grateful for every choir class with Wilkins and every honor band with Web. I’m grateful for every speech competition I’ve competed in with Tenley and Grant. I’m grateful for reading silly Spanish phrases off a banner in Mrs. Nichol’s room when I don’t know what else to say. I’m grateful for every lunch I’ve spent in Stephens’ class room. I’m grateful for making candles with Appley. I’m grateful for getting to travel to Europe with my best friends. I’m grateful for bantering with Willems about who had the best group in Europe. I’m grateful for all the Girl Scout cookies I’ve bought from Mr. Murray’s room. I’m grateful for waking up at 5:30 to go to strength and speed with Mr. Pedersen. I’m grateful for spending my summers with Coach Brand, Moss, and Miranda and my winters with Coach Haddy and Knake the snake.

I’m grateful for all the friendships I’ve made and for all the people I’ve gotten to share these years of my life with. I’m grateful to have been a member of the class of 2020.

These times are hard, but no matter how much we lose due to COVID-19, this virus can’t take away our memories and experiences we’ve had, and for that I’ll be forever grateful.”

— Cate Morgan

A wise strength and speed coach once told me to pay attention to detail. And that’s the advice I’d give to any kid that asks for some. It’s not about the big things and the end result of this long journey that we’ve been on. It’s about all the little things that have made us smile, laugh, and that have brought us true joy along the way. Our highschool experience is not defined by the things we missed, but by the things that made the experience a good one. Words cannot express how truly grateful I am to the teachers and staff, to the fine arts programs, and to the athletic departments here in Mount Vernon.

To every teacher, coach, and Dr. Batenhorst that has put up with me tweeting at you and me thinking that I’m funny, thank you. Thank you MV for showing me the good in the world, for showing me that when things go wrong, there are still so many things waiting to go right. Thank you for believing in me and supporting me every step of these past 12 years. There is no other place I’d rather have grown up than here. These times are hard, but no matter how much we lose due to COVID-19, this virus can’t take away our memories and experiences we’ve had, and for that I’ll be forever grateful.