Margaux Darabian ’25
When I was younger, I would watch my older cousins post on their social media accounts about a particular teenage rite of passage, their captions talking about how they were so excited to show their outfits. That one small photo of them lazily clicking a picture through the mirror with their iPhone 5 made me jump with excitement, waiting for high school to come just for one moment: Homecoming.
Whenever I would go to the mall with my parents, looking for a nice outfit, I would spend at least ten minutes looking at dresses five times too big for me, pointing at the ones I found pretty and saying, “That is the dress I will wear to Homecoming!” How many times have I done this? I don’t know, but I have spent hours staring dreamily at dresses. I imagined attending my first big high school dance, twirling my dress around to show my partner, telling them how I have fantasized this moment for so long.
Safe to say, I have imagined that moment for a very long time. Homecoming is something I bet a lot of people have thought about since they were very young, and it is one of the most exciting things about the upcoming school year. My twin, who does not go to Mercersburg Academy, has her Homecoming dance this weekend. I FaceTimed her while she was shopping with her friends, all of them thrilled for this event. She sent me photos from the store, phone in hand, mirror pictures of the dresses she has been thinking about, asking me for my opinion. While she looks absolutely beautiful in anything she wears, it gave me a reality check. I am in high school. High School! I am transitioning from one chapter of life to another. I am in that moment in time where I am supposed to be in those mirror pictures I dreamed about as a little girl. To me, Homecoming is not just a dance but a marker in life when you realize you are transforming into a young adult, or – for seniors – an actual adult. It baffles me that a four-year Mercersburg Academy senior has never been to one of the most memorable dances of American high school.
One thing I absolutely love about this occasion is how much school spirit it shows, which is mostly seen in sports, but I think Homecoming is a great way to promote it. Homecoming is so much more than a dance; it is a tradition for schools, a tradition that your parents will post on their Facebook and talk about to their friends. It brings together the community, uniting the faculty and students as they plan and produce this wonderful and exciting moment.
Homecoming was created to specifically welcome newcomers or former students back home, celebrating that another year had passed and a new one was beginning. Mercersburg does a great job at making this passage exciting through Family (and in most years Alumni) Weekend, but I expect that a lot of people would appreciate the well-known tradition of a true Homecoming dance as a part of the event. Homecoming is a very special time in high school and life and I believe that the students of this school should be able to experience it too.