Life after high school

-Daniell Lemmer

We spend five years in high school. That is more than 1 800 days of our lives. In high school, we make the most important decisions of our lives. We discover who we are and what we want to do. Our time is spent doing tasks,  and learning for tests, playing sports and competing in cultural activities. Finding a balance in high school is difficult. Knowing what to do is difficult. 

I interviewed three past pupils, Emma-Louise van der Sandt, Elizabeth du Toit and Marietjie Visser.

They matriculated in 2020 and they each answered the questions below. 


  1. 1. What are you busy with now? 


Studying BSc Human Life Sciences and Biology at Stellenbosch University.

First Year Marketing student

  1. 2. Do you regret anything from high school? If you do, please elaborate.

Yes, taking all the support and extra help for granted.

I regret not always giving myself a break. If I could go back in time, I’d cut myself some slack. I’d let myself have a break when I felt like my mind and or body needed it. High school is all about finding a balance between academics, extracurricular activities, your social life and taking care of yourself. Don’t be too hard on yourself. You are doing great.

My matric farewell dress! I would highly recommend not getting your dress the day of your matric farewell.

  1. 3. Do you miss high school? Or are you happier now?

I am so happy now!

I am currently very happy, but I do miss high school. I miss always being surrounded by my best friends, extracurricular activities, teachers who care a lot and wearing our beautiful blue dresses.

I define happiness as not waking up at 6 in the morning for screening. So, in that case, yes – I am much happier.

  1. 4. What is something you wish you had known back in high school?

That even if you think you have everything perfectly planned out, there will always be change and new things coming your way every day.

If you’re loving high school, hold on because it goes by fast. If you’re not loving high school, hold on because it goes by fast.

Your teachers are superheroes. Be kind to them.

  1. 5. What is the biggest life lesson you have learnt thus far?

You are your own worst enemy. Don’t listen to anyone else. Do what you think is the best for you.

Make every moment count. Life goes by faster than we think. Take a lot of pictures and don’t delete them (even if they are cringe worthy). One day those pictures will bring you the most joy. Live your life to its full extent because life is short and we never know what tomorrow brings.

Cheesecake will just about fix anything.

  1. 6. What are your goals for the next few years?

To finish my degree and hopefully be able to go and work overseas.

My goals for the next few years are to get my degree, continuing my education and (hopefully) traveling.

Get a degree in journalism and own a dachshund.

  1. 7. What do you do in your free time?

I go to the gym and spend time with my friends and family.

This really depends on my mood and energy levels. On some days I feel great and try to organise something with friends or just walk around enjoying the sunshine. Other days, I prefer listening to some music or watching a movie.

Drink coffee with a friend / go for long walks in the mountains.

  1. 8. Do you have any advice for the learners?

Don’t wish that time would go by faster. Enjoy being where you are now. Everything will work out even if it’s not what you planned.

Use your time in high school to grow and learn. High school is a great time to figure out who you are as a student, friend and peer. Some things, like dances, some friendships, and many memories are fleeting. But the lessons you collect from your experiences will stay with you. You’ll face challenges no matter how you approach high school. Sometimes, you’ll come out on top of these challenges, but other times, you’ll mess up or make a wrong decision and face the consequences. You’ll make mistakes, but you’ll also improve immensely by learning from those mistakes.

Take subjects you like.

  1. 9. Are you where you thought you would be?

Not at all. But I would not want to be anywhere else.

To be honest, I live my life one day at a time. Thus, I don’t think too far in the future, but I do believe that my past self would be proud of who I am and where I am today.

No, but God’s path is always the right and perfect path.

From the interviews I concluded; that not being where you thought you would be is okay. It is okay not to know and if something doesn’t go your way, just adapt and move on. Everything happens for a reason and yes; life after high school is scary but it’s part of the beautiful journey everyone goes through. 

Don’t worry about the future. Just enjoy the journey of high school, before it passes you by.