Well, it took me over two years, but I've finally reached my 1000th post. So, following in the tradition started by Papa Moose, here is my life story:
I was born on May 16, 1986, and subsequently had two years of peace and quiet before Shlomo was born. Unfortunately, I don't remember a minute of those two years - my earliest memory is of holding my new baby brother on my lap. My parents tell me that he started annoying me early on - I used to scream whenever he came within twenty feet of my blocks, even though he could barely walk at the time and it took him about half an hour to cross that distance.
I lived in a small town in New Jersey for the first five years of my life. I only remember snatches of those years: following my dad around while he shoveled snow from the driveway; dancing in the living room in my favorite purple skirt; running into my parents' room one night when I was afraid of a thunderstorm. I was best friends with a girl in my preschool class - the two of us were inseparable. Every day when I arrived at school, someone would yell to her that I was here, and she'd come running to meet me.
Then when I was five, my family moved to Florida. I don't think I even got to say goodbye to my friend - I remember someone telling me that she'd cried when she found out I was leaving, but I don't remember seeing her before I left. We wrote letters to each other until we were ten, but then we lost track of each other for a while. When we got back in touch, it was only to discover that she'd tried to grow up faster than I did. She was obsessed with boys at a time when I still had no interest in them. We had nothing in common anymore; our friendship was essentially over.
I'd made other friends in the meantime, though. Soon after I arrived in Florida, I made friends with a girl in my kindergarten class. I don't remember how I met her, but we quickly became good friends. In first grade another girl joined us; we called ourselves the Three Musketeers, although none of us were sure exactly what that phrase meant.
But even back then, I never quite felt like I was accepted by my classmates, or even my little group. This little feeling of doubt nagged at the back of my mind until third grade, when it was finally pushed to the front. Someone in my class decided I had the cooties, and the others quickly caught on to the game. At recess I'd chase my classmates around the playground trying to give them "Sarah Cooties." I enjoyed the game, or at least pretended to, but in truth I only played along because I desperately wanted to fit in. But I couldn’t; I was the weird one, the outcast.
So I spent the rest of elementary school feeling isolated, even when I was among my friends. And even my friends had begun to drift away. One of them, like my first best friend, became interested in boys and developed a large group of guy friends. I remained friends with the other for a little longer, but eventually she moved into other circles too. We're still friendly, but we don't hang out together anymore.
In sixth grade, I was assigned to do a history project with a girl who'd come to my school the year before. I'd always thought she was a little strange, and I was not too happy about having to work with her. But I went to her house to work on the project, and after we'd finished working, we had a great time dropping water balloons off her balcony into the parking lot. A short time later, we made a mutual decision to become best friends.
We remained inseparable until eighth grade, when she started hanging out with another girl and excluding me. I was insanely jealous at first, but eventually I called a truce with the other girl and thus began the Three Musketeers, Part Deux. From then on, though, I felt slightly excluded by the two of them; I still resented the intrusion a little bit.
So I began to turn elsewhere. The summer before eighth grade, I'd gone to sleepaway camp and made many new friends. I was particularly close to three of them, and started to think of them as my best friends - I was obsessed with the "best friend" label back then.
And now comes the hard part. I'm not quite sure how to talk about the most recent period of my life; it's still very personal, and I'm not ready to discuss it in detail yet. And it's a bit frustrating that I can't discuss it, because it's hard to really understand the changes I went through without knowing their cause. But basically, a chain of events, involving one of my camp friends and the death of another friend's father, completely changed my view of the world and of myself. I realized that I'd been acting childishly (for example, I was being overly possessive of my friends, always depending on other people to support me, things like that), and I consciously took steps to behave in a more mature manner. I grew up, in essence.
Now I've stopped caring what other people think of me, and I don't care about fitting in either; I just do my own thing. I've become more outspoken as well; I've always had minority opinions, but now I'm not afraid to express them (in large part due to Hatrack, even though I don't usually participate in debate threads here). I am now in truth what I've always claimed to be: an individual.
I'm still an outcast among my classmates. But one of my friends, in her own way, has come to the same conclusions that I have: that it doesn't matter what others think of her. So we're outcasts together. My other friend hasn't yet reached that conclusion - she still tries to fit in - but maybe she'll get there eventually.
I no longer have a "best friend" - I've stopped classifying people. I just have friends. And my life, unfortunately, consists primarily of schoolwork - I'm practically counting the days until I finish high school. I'm looking at different colleges, figuring out what I want to do with my life. I look forward to one day getting married and having children of my own. Socially, I go online whenever I can find the time (and sometimes when I can't). I watch X-Files reruns whenever possible, and I'm still working my way through my FOTR DVD (with minimal success). Occasionally I go to my friend's house and we go out to a movie, or have an X-Files marathon. And that's about it.
Congratulations if you actually read all that. You get a cookie.
Congrats, Jane! You're story is scarily, scarily, close to mine. With the brother, the best friend thing, camp, and even:
quote:Someone in my class decided I had the cooties, and the others quickly caught on to the game. At recess I'd chase my classmates around the playground trying to give them "Sarah Cooties."
In first grade I lost my best friend. I was diagnosed with diabetes and I told her that. She thought it was contagious, and I thought it was fun chasing her around the schoolyard. She never talked to me again.
I haven't known you for too long, but I'm proud of you Here's to a happy 1000 more!
In high school, a girl I'd thought was my best friend suddenly became interested in boys and dating when I definitely wasn't yet. She apparently decided I wasn't cool enough, and quickly cut me out of her life.
It sucks. Congratulations on learning so much so quickly from your experiences. It took me a lot longer.
[This message has been edited by Polystyrene (edited January 15, 2003).]
You know, it's kind of ironic that I happened to post this today. The phone call informing me of my friend's father's death - which was the beginning of that life-changing series of events - came a little before seven-thirty in the morning on this date two years ago.
This morning, again, the phone rang a little before seven-thirty in the morning. It was Ela checking to make sure I was awake.
Yea Jane! I used to be the outcast too, with but one best friend. She's still my best friend-but I wasn't as wise as you-it took her moving to make me stand on my own
Posts: 3493 | Registered: Jul 2001
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Way to go JaneX. Like what others have said, your story is really simular to mine. I'd find my 1000th post (in which it describes the same thing) but Im pretty lazy. If you see me in AIM and you DESPERATELY want me to find it, I will. Always good to have you around.
Posts: 9750 | Registered: Jul 2002
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I've had some similar-ish experiences, and Jane, you've learned from them far more effectively than I managed to. Here's to another 1000 posts (while I struggle to get my first 1000 after five years of posting).
The "Sarah Cooties" thing sort of rang a bell with me, too. My 'friends' in Christian school used to threaten boys with making me kiss them when I was 12 or 13 and not at all interested in kissing them anyways. I showed them, though, 'cause I grew up purty.
At the risk of sounding redundant -- you sound exactly like me. My formative years were very similar in theory, albeit different in practice...i never had "cooties"...my outcast-icism was more unspoken.
there were two very stuck up girls that i became with friends with in the second grade. (which is when i moved back to va beach.) they had grown up together, i was new. they were baptist or some such and i was mormon. they were very exlusionary. somehow i became their friend. we had this puppet lady come teach us how to make puppets, and out of everyone in the class, they got chosen to come work with her in this group called the hurrah players. i was so mad. my puppet was awesome, it just didn't look, er, human. they were total teacher suck ups (though at this point i still liked my teachers) and in the third grade we all went to the same class. i would go to the one pretty girl's slumber party and always felt excluded. i would also go to play at her house, bringing my new bright pink space ray squirt gun, and she would use it and give me a stick instead. i played with both of them at recess until one week they'd play with me and then they'd start saying "track track track" and march away from me. later i found out this was their codeword for "get away from sara." those b*tches. that year i made friends a cool half asian chick whom got sent to the same fourth grade class as i did, while the pretty girl cried. HA. and a lot of tough chicks wanted to beat her up in junior high, and i happend to be friends with the tough chicks. HA. (don't worry, she didn't get beat up.) i am glad you are here, sarah.
Posts: 3936 | Registered: Jul 2000
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My wife moved from Virginia Beach to Florida before finding her way up here. She too talks about feeling out of place and different from everyone at her school, until she almost got into a fight with an amazon of a girl named Chaquita. They became best friends for years.
Did you ever see the cartoon Daria? It is about a high school girl who has her own opinions, is not the "Cute" one, does not fit in. It is the whole world agains her and her best friend--Jane. (It was on MTV, but has moved to Noggin.)
Your story reminded me of her.
For some reason we spend our childhood fighting hard to be "Like" everyone else, when we should realize--we are better!
You told me once you didn't have any writing abilities - you lied! That was well written, loved the little details. Loved the bit about calling yourselves the Three Musketeers "even though you weren't sure what it meant!"
Even though I've never been much of an X-files fan, I'd sit through a marathon with you, 'cause you're cool.
*hugs* You're quite a wench too, and I don't give out wench compliments to just anyone.
Congrats! I think most people felt left out growing up, I know I did. *munches cookie* thanks for sharing your story and giving out cookies, they're yummy!
Posts: 3420 | Registered: Jun 2002
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Aaargh, had I known I was reading for a cookie, it would have seemed like I was doing work or something. Since I didn't know until the very end, I kept reading just for the words, the interest, and for fun!
(I never go to meetings to which they try to lure me by offering cookies. Duh! )
<-- grabs cookie *hmm, delicious* <-- steals another one Just because!