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Friendship Diary - con't

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Lessons Learned
By: Sarah

* = a name change

Entry 3)

It's been three years since I submitted my diary, and two since I gave the second entry. I had switched Middle Schools, and went off to high school. You know what I learned in the middle of my ninth grade year? The turmoil of Middle School had taken it's toll on me, and I had developed ulcers on my intestine. I was out of school for two years, homebound, and now I'm dual-enrolled at our local college. And you know who's going to school with me?


It was the damndest thing - I was getting my books on August 20th of this year (2001), and I ran smack into her. I smiled at her, and said hi. And she sort of waved me off - "Hi, we're not friends right now. There are people around." is what her attitude seemed to be.

It still hurt after all this time.

I was pretty mad after that. What right had she to dismiss me like that? That's a far cry from what it used to be like. I used to surrender to the power she seemed to have over me.

Not anymore. No way. I've grown and changed with time, and I've learned that people have as much power over me as I let them. And used to let them have an awful lot. Me, the skinny little wimp who needed other people to stand up for her, finally developed a backbone.

Y'know, about a month ago, I ran into her at the mall. And her mouth dropped open, and she smiled that beautiful smile of hers and ran at me with a hug.

I think that, after that, I expected a friendlier welcome at the college. The chilly one I recieved reminded me of old times, and that sent a shiver down my spine.

I panicked, and called the one girl who had always been friends with me. My oldest, and dearest friend, not counting Sharon. The one who stood by me, and I betrayed her time after time for Sharon.

And she told me that Sharon had been at school that day, so no worries. She was wrong. An honest mistake - she has been very true and good to me.

It was a shock when I saw Sharon at lunch a week later. She smiled at me, all friendliness.

I tell ya, this business is confusing as all get-out, as we southerners put it. She loves me, she loves me not. She loves me, she loves me not. I wonder what will the next day be like?

That was about four days ago. And this year... this year, there isn't going to be a repeat of the past. Even if I want to believe she's changed, there just isn't going to be any deja vu this time.



Entry 4)

This college is really exciting to me. I auditioned for a play, and I actually got a role as a singer. The rehearsals have been amazing - we've played a game that's essentially about truth and the strangest and most wonderful revelations occur.

See, I haven't found any friends here at this school. Somehow, I've come down with a severe case of shyness. I'm really nevous about approaching people, and I don't want to intrude. I feel as though, if I try and hang out with someone who's been friendly, they'll eventually get sick of an unwanted presence and stop being nice altogether because afterall - who wants a clingy friend? And I'm a clingy friend, I'll admit. When I find someone who is nice to me, I really latch on to them because I have had a lot of really not-niceness in the people around me.

I don't think I've ever gone into a lot of detail in these entries about my experiences in middle and high school when rumors went around about me and friends I'd known my whole life turned against me. That was a really scary time.

I don't want that to happen again.

Back to this game. I really started to feel like a piece of scenery - fading into the background. No one really noticed me, and I didn't call attention to myself. I was loving watching these professional actor-type people perform and knowing that I, somehow, became a part of that.

And then this girl got up, and invited me to play the game with her. A beautiful girl, very sweet, and she told me I was pretty, and that she wanted to be my friend. And I said I didn't have any friends.

The amazing thing is that since then, people have offered me the gift of their friendship, which I didn't think was possible. And y'know - I'm starting to wonder if maybe there is hope for me after all, not only in friendship, but in living. I've been homebound from school for almost two years, sick from ulcers on my intestine most likely caused by stress. Getting back into the world is a drastic change from the regularity and predictability of home. I love it.



Entry 5)

Christmas has come and gone. I spent it alone with my family - none of the friends I made at school came and visited. That was okay - I've learned that I don't always need someone by my side. Sometimes it's good to have alonetime with mom. She's an awfully important person, and I've got to remember that.

I made so many friends last semester. In the beginning, I was so afraid that I'd never really get friendly with anyone, and I still haven't gotten to the point where people come over to my house and stuff, but I have exchanged a few phone calls. I feel a little lost where forming close aquaintences is concerned. I don't know how to invite someone to hang out. I suppose I ought to just do it, and that would be easy if I had a car or something. It's weird being so young in a college environment. I'm not intimidated, but I am a little weary of being forgotten.

I'll get my driver's licence this March. I should have had it quite some time ago, as I turned 16 on July 24th of 2001, but my illness prevented it. Hopefully with that experience under my belt, I'll be able to be more open with people and spend more time with friends out of school.

I had a hard time for a while with feeling left out during the play. All these people knew each other and were so friendly - I began to get paranoid. I have to remember not to do that. Paranoia can be my downfall, and it's definitely not providing a very accurate perception of the world.

I look forward to what tomorrow - the first day of the second semester - brings.


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