In my third period math class, the teacher asks a question to the class, and hands begin to sprout up around the room. I sit still, my hands firmly placed together in my lap, trying to avoid eye contact with my teacher because there was no way I would let anyone in my class believe I cared about my education or future or other objectives like that, while interim trying to give off that confident bad boy persona by leaning back in my chair, headphones on and feet up on the desk, in the back corner of the room. When the teacher calls on a boy in the front row, wearing big glasses, neatly groomed hair, and most likely freshly ironed clothes. He squirms around anxious, wanting the teacher to pick him to answer the question he had clearly worked so hard to achieve. The teacher says the words the boy was so desperate to hear,
“ Yes Billy, do you have the answer?”.
Billy almost faints, gasping for air looking for the words to say, he then blurts out,
“Negative four” as quickly and as fast as he could.
The teacher replies, “ So close Billy, but I think that you might have missed a step.” This upsets the poor little boy and he tries hard to hide the inner shame he feels, as some kids begin to snicker around the class. At this moment I pounce on the poor little squirt. Without so much as sitting up, I call out that Billy is an idiot. Why you might ask? I am a bully.
Parents always say to their kids that jerks hurt others because they are insecure or are hurt themselves, which is true in my story, but not just as black and white as that. I’m not this way by choice, I was just moulded into this rude kid by society, mostly by my substance abusing parents, and the parents of other kids, who tell their kids to not be friends with kid who has drug addict parents, old hand me down clothes two sizes too big, that he cuts to fit, with his pocket knife he carries with him. They just assume that I will turn into my parents, believe I won’t graduate high school, won’t get a job, turn to alcohol, or drugs, have too many kids, and just continue the cycle.
After Billy ran out of class in tears, other kids laughing, was the first time in a while I felt like I made somebody happy, I know it’s only temporary though, it always is, and after the teacher gets mad at me and makes me miss the first two minutes of my English class, everything is back to normal, me sitting alone through English, then lunch, until gym class, where I seize another opportunity to demoralize somebody else that day.
It was the ten minute run, and the class kind of had a competition of who could get the most laps, although not encouraged by the gym teacher, they always happened anyways. I was always one of the fastest kids in my grade, and would usually only lose by a lap or two to the fastest kid. While the teacher read aloud the scores from the previous run, I heard the lowest score of that day belonged to a girl. Her name was Peggy Sue, she usually struggled in Phys. Ed. Class because of her weight, and this time she had achieved a score so low I think I could have beat it with a broken leg. She was a usual target for mockery in our class, and today would be no exception, I grabbed a pencil, piece of paper and anonymously gave her a note that asked “ Too fat to run?”. I knew it was rude, and would definitely make her cry, I also knew I would feel bad about it later at home, but for right now, I wanted her to feel worse than I felt, how I always felt.
The bell rang significantly ending the school day. I watch as kids from all ages rush out the doors, then meet up with their friends, and chat, eat, catch their buses or walk home to their homes where they would probably be greeted by there well groomed and loving mothers, who had already prepared dinner, and would be expecting her husband to arrive from the office at any minute now. After a delicious home cooked meal where all members of the family would discuss their days and then maybe play a board game or watch a television program together. A good day for most, having good days leading to good lives, and positive out looks on those lives as well.
I thought to myself that I was not going home today. Not tonight, I wasn’t in the mood. I knew my parents didn’t care if I went home, and knew that neither of them would notice me whether i were or were not home. It was already about three forty, and I had a thought. A bad thought, but a thought nonetheless. What if I just didn’t go home, not just for the night, or a week, but maybe a month or two, just to see if I could make it, I had already applied at “Harps Family Foods” where there was a few openings for jobs.
I didn’t really expect a phone call back, I mostly just wanted to show people I had some work ethic. If people could see I wasn’t just a useless jerk. If people could look at me without thinking negatively, just for a minute, maybe I could make a good impression, or at least have the chance to do that.
I fall asleep, or at least attempt to over the sounds of yelling and breaking glass. The one voice sounded like my mother downstairs, but the man’s voice was unrecognizable to me. They were in a heated conversation and the words they used were some I was unfamiliar to but that I knew I would be put straight if they ever left my mouth. I don’t let anybody know I pray, but I do, not every night but most.
Tonight I prayed for my mother, and my father wherever he may be. I prayed for a new start, to move away, to someplace where people know nothing about me. Sometimes people don’t take the time or effort to put themselves in everyone else’s shoes instead of the people they immediately see as victims.