I have lived in Fairview for the last 13 years. I have watched this little country town blossom into a bustling suburb. I have seen Walmarts, Dollar Generals, Publix’s, Mapcos, and auditoriums be built from the ground up. However I can’t help compare these massive buildings to my life here in Fairview. I came here when I was 5 years old. The earliest memory I have here is my house on White Oak Drive. I used to play outside in the mud. I used to walk around my house in high-heeled shoes, pretending I was a grown up. I used to play restaurant with my little sister. All of these things were things that I thought I would still have, even as I grew up. The hard, sad reality hit me once I started high school. I got my first job at McDonald’s here in town when I was 16 years old. At least I got to play restaurant right? I got to make apple pies, not mud pies. I swapped my high heels for non-slip shoes. This job has always been my playground since I was able to work. I go to school all day then go straight to work and stay all night. This has been my daily routine for the last 2 years. Some days I have been glad to leave school, but as the time for me to officially say goodbye draws near, I am getting less and less excited to leave these walls every day. This is all I have known for 4 years, and now suddenly, everything is changing. My friends and my teachers that have been with me all these years have watched me grow. They’ve watched me stumble and fall, they’ve seen me at my lowest, but also at my highest. I have had some of the best memories in this little town, but also some of the experiences that have set me back a couple of steps. I have made some mistakes but I regret nothing. To some people, this might sound absurd, but if these things had not happened, I would not be the kind of person I am. These walls are all I have known for the last 4 years. For me, graduation is bittersweet. I have worked so hard to get to this point. I’m tired of high school, but at the same time, I am so nervous to have to start all the way back at the bottom. I am ready for that freedom, but I don’t have the same safety net and support system as I do here at Fairview High School. This place, as awful as the food is, has shaped me and molded me in ways that I never thought possible. The people and the atmosphere have changed me in so many ways, for better and for worse. Although I complain about it a lot, I would not trade this place for anywhere else. I’m leaving for college and going on the road after graduation, but this will always be my home no matter what. Once a Jacket, always a Jacket. Goodbye, Fairview.