Blue Devil Confessions: Dealing with Trauma While Trying to Navigate High School

Abigail Ellis

Abigail Ellis

Abigail Ellis, Reporter

EDITOR’S NOTE: Trigger warning, this story contains discussion about mental health. The story has been approved by the parents and family of the student who has written it.

Abigail Ellis

This year has been a long year for a lot of people. It’s our first year back in school since covid and it’s been difficult dealing with it all. Add that to the fact that people can and definitely have plenty of other things going on in their lives, this school year has been far from easy or fun for many.

Like others, this year was supposed to be such a big year with so many important things in my life happening.

I’ve had a lot happen to me the last few years, with a house fire during covid and multiple family issues, but the stress I felt this school year was the worst in a while.

Starting my senior year, turning eighteen, prom, graduation, so many things I’ve been looking forward to for as long as I can remember, all turned into challenges. 

It’s my senior year this year, I’m supposed to be able to enjoy and be excited for what’s to come next for me, but for most of this school year I’ve had many things stop me from enjoying my last year of high school to the fullest.

This school year has been one of the most difficult for me, especially mentally. I’ve been struggling with my mental health and having traumatic things happen one after another while still having to focus on school to graduate is so stressful.

I share this because my story is not unique. Many students are facing difficult times and I hope that by sharing mine, they know they are not alone.

Ever since October, my little sister, who’s fifteen, has been in and out of the hospital and a treatment center for an eating disorder. She’s been to Boston Children’s Hospital, and is currently there for the fourth time, and has been going back to the same treatment center the last 3 times she was there.

With my sister being gone and not home for most of the year and my mother having to be with her while at the hospital, I’ve been so out of focus with school and my own life.

Knowing my sister is struggling so much still hurts to see and continuously hear about. She’s only been home for a couple months since October which has been so difficult to even think about. 

I love my family, but this school year, I’ve felt almost pushed aside sometimes. I will never blame them for my feeling like this, but it’s hard to not think like that sometimes.

My family was so busy with different things this year, which I fully understand and never get upset over, but there have been times, and there still are, where I feel less important, or like what’s been going on with me isn’t as important.

Adding to this is the loss of a childhood friend.

In April, a friend who I was very close with growing up and had known for over 15 years passed away. We hadn’t been close for a while, mainly because we both had our own things going, but she will always be important to me.

That friend was such a major part of my childhood. We were always so close and spent so much time together. She would always come over to my house for sleepovers or to hang out and I would go to hers often as well. She was a very important part of my life while I was growing up and I will always appreciate her for everything.

Finding out that friend passed away hurt so much and still does. I try to focus on all the happy memories I have with her, but it’s still not the easiest thing to do. 

I miss her everyday and always will.

With my mental health getting worse over the school year, getting in work became so hard for me to do. I ended up quitting my job to focus on school and catch up without the extra stress.

By the time I finally was almost caught up, my sister ended up back in the hospital. Luckily, her and mom having to go back to Boston didn’t affect me as much this time. She just got back home and hopefully will be staying home.

I’m still so excited for everything that’s going to happen, but with how much I still have going on, I’m not too sure what to feel or what to focus on currently. I try so hard to focus on myself and to make sure I’m doing my best and what’s right for me, but it can be extremely hard.

A major thing that helped me through this school year was my friends. They’ve been there for me each time my sister was back in the hospital or treatment center.

While this school year has been the worst, in some ways it also has been the best one I’ve had, at least in a long time. I met some of the best people and have amazing friends in my life now. I’ve gotten closer with some family, and I’ve finally figured out what I want to do with my life.

As much as I hated so many things that happened, it helped me to start to get my life back on track and figure things out for myself and my future.

I’m letting myself be excited for prom, for graduation, and for college.

I still have so much to work on for myself and my future, but I have things to look forward to now. I don’t want to keep holding myself back from being myself and doing what I want to. I have the start of a plan for my life. 

If you are in the same situation, seek help. Talk to family, teachers, counselors, friends. You are not alone.