For me, he gave a lot of good advice and was the vote of confidence I really needed back then (and still do, honestly, although not to the same extent). He was also a big help as I got ready to move on to college. Being the oldest, especially in a family where the only parent who gave two shits about you hadn't gone through the American education system, you tend to be the guinea pig, the one who never knows what to expect. Not only did my counselor assure me I'd be fine in college (and I was more than fine, hehe- I graduated with a 3.93 QPA), but he also took the time to write a very nice recommendation letter for my college applications.
He meant even more to my mom and sister. Krissy had a very hard time in high school. I won't get into the nitty-gritty, but she had a group of not-so-desirable friends who taught her some not-so-desirable habits. She had to be dragged to school each morning, refused to apply herself, and made life at home generally miserable. Our counselor was Mom's bulwark of support and shoulder to cry on, especially with Dad out of the picture and me off at Pitt. He also helped Krissy get her act together. It's amazing when you compare her present self to the way she was in high school. Now, not only does she willingly get out of bed early each morning to go to her full-time job, but she also enrolled herself at Robert Morris University (we call it "Bobby Mo" ;) ) and is making straight As. She has a lot to be proud of- and of course my counselor and mom are thrilled, and I'm also glad to have her as a friend again ^_^
Walking around in the high school this morning was quite surreal. In a way it felt like I had never left, and at the same time, it was so unfamiliar. Granted, that's probably because we walked through an area of the school that they hadn't finished remodeling when I was a student... but I realized that, left to my own, I would probably have gotten lost in that building- a building I used to know every square inch of. Disturbing.
Now, I have some high school-aged friends who read my LiveJournal, and I hope they won't be offended when I say that all the students I walked past looked so young. Did I look that young four years ago? I guess a lot really has happened between my two graduations. My outlook on life has undergone several revolutions. I enjoy many of the same hobbies, but in different ways. My family is about to go from small to friggin' huge (my marriage and my mom's remarriage will tack on a whole busload of in-laws). I lived on my own for a few years, and soon I'll be striking out on my own again for good, this time with a wonderful person at my side. My mom has allowed a cat to live in her house and she LOVES her, fer cryin' out loud. I could've swarn that was one of the signs of the Apocalypse.
So... yeah. Change is bad and change is good... but mostly good.