How Applying to College Made Me Grateful For the Little Things

After editing one sentence of one essay of what feels like a million you have left to write for the 37th time, cursing at the CommonApp for crashing yet again and realizing just how close the deadlines are as you cross off another day on the calendar; you may want to give up hope. But even in the most bitter, agitating, stressful moments of our lives, it's not hard to find something sweet. It can be as simple as a bowl of ice cream.

During an impromptu speaking round at my speech and debate tournament this past weekend, I began to reflect on how the simplest moments can be the most beautiful. I was given the topic of "ice cream" to speak about, and instead of discussing the merits of chocolate vs. vanilla (vanilla is obviously better), I reflected on how small moments can often be the sweetest. Because when we get too caught up in anything and everything that's wrong with our lives, it's too easy to overlook the little things.

Recently I have come to realize that something simple like going for coffee with my dad after school or finally nailing my hashtag hand motion for my forensics speech can be just as exciting as any major milestone. It may not be a college acceptance letter, but it's definitely worth appreciating.

As a senior in high school there are a lot of things I am not thankful for: the CommonApp is my most viewed website, I still don't know where I am going to college, the fact that I just want to be in college already (okay maybe all of it has to do with college). However, if we get too caught up in all the stress of applying to college, we forget to appreciate our senior year. An admissions counselor during an information session at a college I toured said it the best "don't make senior year the year you apply to college, make it a powerful culminating year to your high school experience."

This Thanksgiving weekend, I encourage all the seniors to turn off your laptop and put away those applications for a little bit. Enjoy Thanksgiving with your family; don't spend your whole weekend holed up in your room with writing supplements. Take a moment; think about where you are right now. Now think ahead one year in your life, how you will be coming home from college to celebrate Thanksgiving. In less than nine months, you will be heading off to college whether you go across the country or 10 minutes from home.It's important to live in the moment, instead of living in the future.

Right now, I am thankful to be a high school senior with a loving family, two adorable cats, the best forensics team to spend my Saturdays in suits with, a newspaper to be an editor for, all of my amazing friends and the opportunity to blog for the HuffPost Teen along with the community of brilliant bloggers I contribute beside.

The things we take for granted are the sweetest, just like a bowl of ice cream.