Student survives serious case of early-onset senioritis


Josh Ali

Janice Asabere in a wheelchair after being severely affected by senioritis

Janice Asabere, Opinion Managing Editor

At the age of 17, I was diagnosed with a life-changing disease. I knew something was wrong before the diagnosis, but WebMD didn’t put all of the symptoms together for me.

I was lethargic, tired, unmotivated, and generally listless. Getting out of bed was difficult most days. My grades began to suffer. Was it mono? A rare blood disorder?

No. I had a severe case of senioritis.

When I came to terms with my senioritis on the last day of the first quarter, my grades were awful. I saw what I had done. I know my grades don’t determine who I am as a person, but I was in some deep trouble. I had absolutely no idea how I let it get that far. Time flies by when you have no idea what you’re doing.

I guess my first quarter grades didn’t fully put me into shock, so I also failed the second quarter. The disease was in full effect and I began to worry that it would prove fatal. Getting my life together was going to require a lot of honesty with myself. I was going to have to be truly focused and let no distractions steer me from my goal.

And moreover, I realized that I was doing too much talking and not enough doing. I felt like a D3 athlete when really my mindset was D1.

At least I’m not alone. Studies have shown that 99.9 percent of seniors contract a form of senioritis during their final year of high school. But for most, the disease hits fourth quarter. Mine was early-onset, so hopefully I will be over the worst of it and immune to further outbreaks by the time it hits most of my classmates. Although, it’s not uncommon to experience additional flare-ups after the initial infection. 

Believe it or not, I’m glad that I was diagnosed with senioritis. I had to go through this in order to be humbled. I really needed to be humbled. I used to have the mindset of everything coming easily to me because I never really struggled with keeping up in school until my senior year. I now know that I really have to put in the work in order to reveal what I am truly capable of. Anything lower than an A or B is beyond me.

Have hope, fellow seniors. Living with senioritis is difficult, but you can pull through this devastating disease. I know because I am. Just take it one day at a time.

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