Bailey Brantingham: From ‘Grape’ to Graduate; Goodbye Central!

Bailey Brantingham, Editor

When I started my time at Central four whole years ago, I never would have thought things would end like this. Now, as I sit here writing my final goodbyes from my bedroom instead of in B-109, I realize that my time is up.

Those first three years were pretty great. I had my friends by my side and I was the happiest I had ever been. Then senior year came, and it all came crumbling down at my feet. I tried a few times to go back to in-person school like many of my peers, but I just couldn’t handle it. I felt as though most of my friends had scattered, whether it was going to a different school, graduating, or even moving back to their home country of Norway. I will admit that senior year was one of the darkest and loneliest periods of my life and I thought that it would never end.

However, I am finally recognizing what people call “the light at the end of the tunnel” as graduation approaches. Although the year is finally up, I can’t help but feel cheated. This year, it seems as though I got absolutely nothing. No homecoming, no prom, no real Senior Day. It all feels so artificial. When I start to regret my senior year and feel upset about everything I missed out on and all the friends I lost, I have to remember to remind myself that I made it. The waiting is over. It is time for me to make new friends and move to a new city and start over. Now is my chance.

When I start to regret my senior year and feel upset about everything I missed out on and all the friends I lost, I have to remember to remind myself that I made it.

— Bailey Brantingham, 4-year staff member of The Central Digest

Even though I have been in the school building for around a total of five days this year, I still can’t break the strong connection I have with the Central Digest. It has been part of my life for the entirety of my high school career, and I feel that no amount of time away from the classroom can break that bond.

I would like to thank the two people who have been by my side ever since that first day I walked into the class that I believed so much that I would regret signing up for. Blake — we both walked into that classroom in 2017 with many other freshmen, but we were the only two to make it out in tact after all four years. Even though you don’t talk very much and we are quite the complete opposites, we both stuck with it and made it out on top. Now it’s time for us to finally start our real lives and I wish you the best of luck.

To Mr. Cantrell, thank you for being the best teacher I have ever had since freshman year. Thank you for making me laugh when I needed it most, thank you for not actually sending me to ISS when I would yell and climb inside the cabinets, and thank you for being the kind of teacher that made me want to stay in the journalism class, even though I was petrified in that first week of school with my purple collared shirt or my “grape” uniform as the seniors called it. I wish you the best in the continuation of your high school English and basketball coach career.

Now, as I graduate in less than a week, I begin to realize how slow, yet extraordinarily these four years have passed me by. Sometimes I wish I could go back and do it all over again, but I remember not to dwell on these things and that this chapter of my life is finally closing and for that, I should be happy. To close, I would like to thank the entirety of the Digest staff of the past four years. I would like to end this chapter with a quote about high school and life in general from a book that I find myself relating to more than ever at the moment: “Enjoy it. Because it’s happening.”