I remember it like it was yesterday…
the heavy scent of lemons,
hallways of gleaming lockers.
I had finally made it to grade 9!
I was soooooo nervcited.
But as exciting and new as it was,
there was also a scary not so cool side too…
girls snickering at my “uncool” clothing,
dropping my books in the classroom,
getting lost in the maze of hallways.
And, of course, I knew no one…
I had no friends.
Now, I did eventually meet my “group”,
and although we weren’t the most popular we made memories,
watching out for each other,
getting in trouble together,
discovering what it means to be a true friend
This year, my oldest stepped into highschool,
He knows no one.
He’s a gentle giant,
and doesn’t understand teenage social structures.
I feel like every day I’m throwing him to the wolves.
Maybe if I
locked him in his room,
kept him at home until he is thirty,
He wouldn’t have to go through this…
I wouldn’t have to go through this.
But we do.
And the school bus picks him up each morning.
And I lay awake at night.
Why do I tell you this?
Perhaps you know someone who is going to your school,
sitting by themselves for lunch
sit beside them
you’d be surprised at what you learn from a gentle giant.
Or you are the teacher and there is one in your class,
playing by themselves at recess,
nose stuck in a book because they are safe
find out their interests
help them interact with others.
Maybe it’s you,
take a chance,
find your tribe.
It may involve pain and discomfort,
but it’s worth it.
I challenge you to keep an eye out for not only the bullied, but the forgotten in your life. You know who they are…the ones your eyes pass over almost involuntarily.
If you like what I write I’m revamping my blog,
and will be discussing tons of my most embarassing teenage moments.
I remember exactly how he might be feeling as “forgotten.” It’s a big theme in World Without Sound. Maybe he’d like to be a beta reader!
I’m hurting for your son, and for you, Mama Bear.
That’s tough. 😦 My daughter has been struggling all summer since we moved – none of her old friends will respond to her calls or texts. It’s been breaking our hearts to see her miss them. I was glad when school started so she could start making new friends. We spent this past Saturday getting to know one of the girls and her family. Afterwards, daughter told me she thinks she may be that other girl’s only friend so far – she just moved here, too, and has some disabilities that set her apart, even in a classroom of “exceptional students”. “She’s a little different, Momma, and I know what that feels like. The other girls in class just haven’t gotten to know her yet.” All I could do was hug her and tell her how proud I am of her.
I wish kids would understand that “still waters run deep” and give attention to their quiet and lonely classmates. After leaving high school, I learned how precious those personalities are. There’s much they’d love to share with others if given the chance.