Last week my 17-year-old sister said to me, “Today is one of those days when I feel like I can’t see through to the end of eleventh grade.”

One day when I was 17 and in eleventh grade, during orchestra class, I went into the music office, called my mom, and said, “You need to give me a reason to stay. Otherwise I’m coming home.”

I was done with the whole hullaballoo of high school. Yearbook, physics, honors societies, the musical, the junior banquet, et cetera et cetera. I didn’t want to be there anymore. I was tired. I was bored. I wanted to go home.

I expected, of course, for my mother to say, “Stick it out. You can do it. School is important. Education is good. We love you.” That’s what I expected. Instead, she said, “Call me back in ten minutes.”

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