Hey, DGS: Realize why screaming at me as I enter school makes me uncomfortable


Kira Matheson

I love spirit week, but the hallway greeting is over whelming and creates anxious feelings.

I’ll be the first to admit, I love spirit week. I enjoy dressing up in something different every day and matching with my peers. Seeing the whole school come together for a good cause is something truly inspiring to watch.

However, what I dislike is the way every spirit week starts. Every Monday of spirit week, I casually walk into school ready to finish my coffee and start my day only to be greeted by a large group of enthusiastic teachers and students cheering, clapping and yelling while crowding me in the entryway.

Personally, large crowds and lots of yelling make me feel extremely anxious. I don’t do well at concerts, festivals or even assemblies. Being stuck in a large group of loud people makes me overwhelmed and anxious.

Because concerts, festivals and other situations with large crowds make me feel anxious, I rarely go to them. Even assemblies have options for people who feel anxiety when they are in large crowds. I don’t actively put myself in situations that I know will make me uncomfortable.

Since the hallway greetings for spirit week do not happen often, I generally forget about it until I am walking through the doors and see a large group of staff and students. I am then in a situation I know will make me anxious, with no option but to keep walking.

It does not help that the group blocks the staircases in that area, making it difficult to get to where you need to go. I am a big fan of routines and taking the same staircase every day. On Mondays during spirit week, I either have to go a longer route or barrel my way through the crowd.

After such an anxiety-inducing greeting, I just have to go on with my day and attend class, on edge and unable to focus throughout all of first period. Beyond first period my mood is thrown off for the rest of the day.

I love that people have so much school spirit and that they can be so thrilled and overjoyed for spirit week. I just wish there were a way they could display their spirit without evoking anxiety for other students.

I am not the only student in this school who may experience anxiety from this. While it excites many, it also hurts others. There are other options to celebrate how awesome spirit week actually is without causing harm to some students.

I know this is a DGS tradition, but for a school that works hard to make the school a safe and comfortable learning environment, I feel this tradition contradicts its goals. Sometimes, even good things have to adapt to the times.