I was digging around in the deep file folders of my computer and found this write up that I apparently never posted. Enjoy 🙂
I’m pretty sure that being in a middle school classroom has given me some major insight into . . . life. I remember how middle school was. I was definitely the shy girl. I turned red if the teacher spoke to me, and I didn’t go out of the way to talk to people. But, I had friends, especially in eighth grade, and that’s pretty much all that mattered. I did okay in my classes. I was kind of bummed when my final grade in science was a 97. I can probably name most of the guys I had crushes on. Those were serious stuff in middle school—way more serious than pre-algebra. They knew how to flip their hair just right, and God forbid they hold a door open. Swoon. The funny thing is, I crushed on at least two guys that my best friend also crushed on. She was just a lot more vocal. Then there were all the nice guys who asked me out—probably about 8 of them. Of course, that was the case of they weren’t popular or athletic but probably grew up to be better guys than all the rest. Except maybe a couple of them… some were just plain weird. I wonder where they are now.
Anyway, I had no idea where my life would take me back then. Heck, I still have no idea. But the last five-ish years have meant a LOT of changes. Now, sitting in my mom’s eighth grade classroom, I wish I could tell these students everything they’re about to encounter. I wish I could tell them that high school is a little less cruel but far more harsh. They’ll find friends who like them and who are like them. They’ll make major choices that will steer the course of their lives, like who to hang out with or what to do on the weekends. They’ll graduate and think ‘dang, weren’t we just in eighth grade yesterday?’ and their parents will tell them ‘it only gets faster.’ Some of them will cry at graduation because high school was the best time of their lives. Others will run out the doors screaming, happy to be rid of that place. But no matter how they feel when they leave, they’ll never forget those four years. And then, just as everything seems wonderful or horrible or like they’re all grown up, college hits. Or the real world. Whichever they choose. In reality, they’re pretty much the same. Both equal more new experiences and, probably, a huge time of growth. And then all of a sudden eighth grade is a distant memory, and they’ll look back on who they were and how they’ve changed and either laugh or cry or a little of both. I wish I could tell them all this and more, but where would we be if we couldn’t figure things out for ourselves?