Senior Testimonial: Brady Volin ’22

Brady Volin , Co-Editor

Sitting down and actually writing this thing may be the hardest assignment I have ever had in high school. As I am writing this testimonial, it is May 17 and it is a Tuesday morning. This is due tomorrow. My friends know I am the opposite of a procrastinator. I always love to get my work done as soon as possible because having nothing on my plate is just relaxing. This should prove how hard it is to try and put your high school experience on a paper. Having to try and encompass everything I have experienced in high school is just a daunting task, but I am going to try my best starting with my freshman year.

Freshman year felt like a fever dream. Finally being in high school after what felt like forever felt surreal. I remember going to the balcony at the end of school on the first day when the seniors were doing their speeches and hearing about how fast it all went. At the time I just couldn’t believe what I was hearing, school never moved quickly for me and it always felt like a drag. This is the first thing I really want to tell everyone who may be reading this and who still has time in high school… SAVOR THE MOMENT. Time moves so fast it is crazy. Never take any moments for granted, because this is probably the best part of your life and it will be a time you look back on and wish you were still there. That is all very cliche but it is so true.

There were so many times freshman year where I vividly remember sitting in Personal Finance with Ms. Apuzzo-Langton thinking I wish this could just move faster. Now I wish I didn’t wish that. That isn’t meant to scare anyone who is younger, because it is a good thing time moves quickly sometimes. It means you are having a great high school experience, it just means sometimes stop and smell the roses and enjoy the moment.

Moving to my sophomore year, there is one thing that really sticks out to me. It was the number of games I attended in support of the school. That is one thing I think literally everybody should do. It is so fun and you always will have friends who are down to go. On that note I specifically want to thank Will Gravell for saying yes everytime I asked you to go to all those volleyball games. Unfortunately this year was also cut short because of COVID. What started as a nice two week break ended up changing everyone’s lives and I’m just grateful that I got through it all.
This brings me to another story I vividly remember from my high school year. I was sitting in Ms. Kraus’s history class with Colin W., Enzo, and Jake L. The class was talking about this new found COVID (this was even before the announcement of our break) and Colin turns to me and says, “I would get COVID so we could all get a few weeks off.” I now doubt he would say the same thing knowing what would happen after.

When COVID hit and I was locked in my house, I then appreciated all the things I took for granted and I then also appreciated others. I appreciated having a big family who would do zoom calls every once in a while. I appreciated having my sisters home since they were my main source of entertainment. I also appreciated my parents more than anything because I know being at home with an adult (I guess Sarissa would be an adult?) and two teenagers for a half a year was probably among the last things they wanted to do. Since I was at home for the rest of that year, I’ll just skip to the most busted junior year of all time.

My junior year was the weirdest year of all time. It was the year of the coveted hybrid schedule. I was in the Cardinal group so I only went to school on Mondays and Wednesdays. This was one of the best times of my life. A few of my friends and I created a tradition because of this schedule. Every Wednesday night we would go out to dinner and then watch Wednesday night NBA on ESPN. This tradition at the time didn’t feel all that special, it just felt like another hang out, but looking back it was all but that. We all made the most of a really weird situation and made some great memories.
This brings me to another lesson I want to share, make traditions with your friends. Whether it is meeting for dinner at a spot every week or just finding something to do like playing basketball on the weekends, make it a thing that happens all the time. Having time with your friends before you all eventually part ways is so valuable. Junior year is also the true beginning of the college talk. This year is very important and stressful, but if I can do it anyone can do it. Obviously take it seriously and don’t stress out too much. At the end of the day whatever happens happens and you will be fine, everyone before you was fine and you will be too.

This now brings me to my final year and instead of writing about a lesson or something that has happened to me this year, I just want to thank people for all they have done for me while I have been in high school.

First I want to thank Mrs. Stoker. She is one of the most caring people (let alone teachers) I have ever met in my life. She treats you like one of her own kids and truly cares about everything that goes on in your life. Having support like that outside of your family is so valuable to have. I was lucky enough to hear about journalism from my sister so I owe it to her for giving me the opportunity to meet Mrs. Stoker. Usually it would be really hard to narrow down your favorite teacher as I have had just so many throughout my life but Mrs. Stoker, you have made that decision very easy for me! Thank you for all you do for all of your students and for me, you are appreciated and we all care about you the same that you do to us.

Next I want to thank some of my friends. I have been lucky enough to have so many great friends throughout my life. I want to especially thank Chuck, Tman, Jonny, Rigs, Nicky B and Zo (Willy, you already got your thank you). You all have been my friends since seriously as long as I can remember and have been with me through everything I can think of in life. So thank you for sticking with me. I have been so lucky to have been able to call you all friends throughout the years, and I’m excited to see what all of you do because I know it is going to be great for all of you.

I also really want to thank Ella. Doing ASP was one of the best decisions I have ever made and I’m so happy I had to take your van back home from Kentucky. You have matured me so much and I am so thankful for that. I am so glad that I was able to leave my Under Armor gear behind and change my style just a little bit. Thank you (like my friends) for always being there for me no matter the time of day.

Now the best thank you for last. I want to thank my family: Sarissa, Tabitha, Mom and Dad. Sometimes I don’t think I realize how lucky I am to have a family like I do. Having 4 best friends who I have lived with for my whole life makes me feel so lucky. Sarissa and Tabitha, thank you for guiding me through my life. I know how annoying I have been (and probably still am) but no matter I have always felt so loved by both of you, which isn’t always a guarantee with siblings so thank you. Mom and Dad, there isn’t enough internet storage for me to write how thankful and how much I love you both. You do so much for Tabitha, Sarissa, and me; and we really don’t say thank you enough, but believe me we do appreciate all that you do for us and we all know how lucky we are to have you as parents. I also want to thank you guys for giving me such a great sense of humor because I know that sort of stuff is hereditary.

I guess that wraps it up. I know that this isn’t perfect, but I think that is how my testimonial should be. I am not perfect either. Thank you for taking the time to read this if anyone actually is, WHS will always be in my heart. This is not goodbye, it is just a see you later to everyone.

I can’t believe I just wrote that.