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How to deal with being the youngest person in your grade

When is your birthday? February? April? June? Well, mine is in October. And no, not October as in the big, wise, oldest in the grade. I am actually one of the youngest in my grade.

Whether you have a summer birthday or a fall birthday like me, being the youngest in your grade can really suck. Your birthday is always last—so you turn a certain age, like 13 or 16, after all your friends. And don't forget the struggle of planning a birthday party. Summer babies don't have friends around on their birthdays and fall girlies still have not had a chance to meet new friends during the new school year. With all the late birthdays coming up, it's the perfect time to reflect on all the cons and *the pros* of being the "baby" of your grade.

I know, I know. How can I be an October baby and not the oldest in the grade? Well, I guess I owe you an explanation. I used to go to a school district where the cutoff for making my grade was October 15. As someone who was born in early October, this was no problem. Then, when I was going into 4th grade, I moved school districts. The cutoff in my new school was October 1, which was bad news — I was *not* about to repeat 3rd grade. Luckily for me, I only moved a town over so I was able to stay in my grade!

It's been weird though; being the youngest. I'm going into 12th grade being 16, while I have friends who are 18 in the same grade. Also, let's not leave out that I'm going into 12th grade and still don't have my license! But whatever...I'll get it in October, I guess.

The pro of not having my license yet is that I get to have all my friends drive me around! My fave thing is when a friend will randomly call me to tell me she's outside to pick me up. We go on an adventure—get food from a drive-thru or just ride around and talk, all without me having to stress about stepping into the driver's seat.

Also, I get to take major advantage of my outdoorsy side and go on lots of walks. If I don't have a ride from my parents, I just put on a cute workout outfit and comfy shoes and get moving.

Another thing that has always caused an issue for me is birthday parties. My school starts pretty late, almost the middle of September. With my birthday within the first few weeks of school, it has always been so hard for me to decide on an invite list for birthday parties. 

Take 4th grade, when I was new to my school. I didn't know anyone. I had a hard time fitting into my class and had no idea who to invite to my birthday party. Or, in 6th grade, when I started middle school. I was still getting used to going to a new school with lockers, big hallways and new kids. I had to decide after just two weeks which new acquaintances of mine should be invited to my birthday celebration. 

Despite the annoyances, having to plan my birthday parties early had benefits. I would not have befriended some of my BFFs if it weren't for my early birthday. In 9th grade, a new girl moved to my area. I had barely talked to her, but I thought it would be nice to invite her to my birthday party. She came, gave me a gift, yet did not talk to me much. The important thing, though, was that she met me. She is now one of my best friends and we always joke about how if it wasn't for me inviting her, we may have never become friends.

So late birthday gals, don't freak out about your late birthday. Instead, try to realize how many *pros* there are to it. And also your birthday is coming up...so get excited!

When's your birthday? Tell us on Twitter! @girlslifemag

GIFs via Giphy

Cover pic via Unsplash

by Zohar Peleg | 8/5/2021
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