This is the final part (part 2) to my conclusion of the “Me…In School” posts. And we begin with my third year of high school and an ego that was growing almost uncontrollably some might say…
I’m not quite sure how to else to put it. My Junior year was the peak for my “rule the world” persona. And by peak, I mean to say that it came crashing down like an avalanche.
“Business” was good, but it was a new year and I wanted MORE. Selling candy bars and gum suddenly seemed so meek and meaningless. It wasn’t as much about the money anymore as it was my own ego and desire to prove to all other students that I was better than them. I was the only student in the freak’n school who had found a way to earn an income just by attending something that I was legally required to. To hell with my classes and learning anything…I had learned how to make money and then use it to insure my high school years passed by with ease.
Toward the second half of my first semester as a Junior, my friends were working for me. This made things even more fun for me, and allowed them to earn a commission as they boosted my sales. At this point I don’t think I even knew who I was any more. I’d not only convinced everyone around me that I was a new person, but I’d convinced myself that I was an untouchable “God” so to speak. And it was also at this point that selling candy was no longer enough to satisfy my hunger for the game. I needed to sell things that made even more money.
You might be scratching your head at this point because I already mentioned it wasn’t about the money anymore, but then I turn around and say I wanted to make more. Here is what I mean…It truly wasn’t about the money because I made enough to do what I wanted, but I chose to play the numbers game. That’s to say I just wanted to see the numbers (the money total) go higher and higher. A bigger number would mean I was winning, and a declining number…well, I didn’t consider that a possibility.
In conversation with someone I know very well I’ve never been shy to talk about what took place beyond this point in my Junior year. I’m an open book on here and to the average person. I’ll tell you how much money is sitting in my bank account, or what sexually pleases me if that’s what you want to know, but it’s at this point that I cannot go into detail about what transpired my Junior year of high school. As much as I would like to I simply can’t do it. But I will skip ahead to the consequences of a fallen empire…
Suspended from school for over a week…along with 3 Saturday school sessions.
My school life was flipped upside down and then anally fucked. When I did get to return to school I endured about a 3 week in school suspension, which meant I worked out of one of the offices instead of being allowed to attend normal classes. I was beyond livid that my friends had so easily turned against me. I hadn’t talked to them since we got in trouble for it all. And when I was finally allowed back into normal classes, I was gawked at like a rare animal in a zoo. To make matters worse, I officially had no friends. I had lied to everyone and denied everything against me, despite the evidence and my friends testimonies. I couldn’t talk to them anymore. They were dead to me, and I requested to be seated away from them in any classes we had together and to NEVER be partnered with them on any assignment.
I walked into school the minute classes started…I ate lunch by myself…and I practically talked to no one. This lasted for about a month or two right up to the near end of my Junior year. I was partnered with one of my friends by a teacher who hadn’t listened to the staff when they informed him of my request. This forced a very awkward conversation between my friend and I, but it re-ignited the hope that I could turn things around and get my friends back.
They weren’t mad at me, and I had been the one avoiding them this whole time. With that one uncomfortable conversation, I started to make my way back into their lives. And I was able to do so right before school ended for the summer. I had been given JUST enough time to try and get my friends back. And to my surprise, they accepted me back.
We saw each other a few times over the summer. Thankfully I did have some friends outside of my school who had no idea about any of this, so I was able to spend most of the summer with them.
With the start of my Senior year, I was feeling much more comfortable around my friends again and we all just focused on having fun together. I did more of my own class assignments and focused on just being a 17 year old. The biggest struggle was not being able to hang out with my friends outside of school very much. My parents still didn’t know I was talking to them again. My parents had believed my lies and were turned against my friends. But that changed when I came home one day to find that someone had written a letter them…The letter stated that this person knew I’d spent some time with my friends over the summer, and that I was talking to them again, and that I was holding a lot of bad stuff in that I really needed to get out. There was no name or return address on the letter. Whoever it was, was only trying to help me. It made for a very difficult evening as I poured out the truth and finally felt like I could breathe again in my own home.
After that, my life started to truly return to normal. My first guess at who wrote the letter, was one of my friends Moms. One of the friends who was involved in all this mess. I called his house and asked to speak to her and I immediately thanked her for sending my parents the letter. To my surprise though, she didn’t know what I was talking about, but was happy to hear that I had finally let the truth out.
It wasn’t until the very end of my senior year that I finally realized who wrote the letter. It was one of the guidance counselors at school. She had been involved with the entire process as it all unfolded the year before. She was a very sweet person and was very easy to talk to. I should have realized it sooner, because one of my other friends who was involved, went and talked to her a lot after everything that happened. I think she really helped him get through it all, and he must have been the one to tell her about us hanging out over the summer and talking again.
I had some paperwork from her and I compared the handwriting to find that it was an exact match to that of the letter that was sent to my parents. Without her having sent that letter, my Senior year would have been a tough one. I’d have been trapped by my own darkness…my own lies…and I would have spent so much time hiding the fact that I was talking to my friends again, just so I could continue to hide the truth from my parents. The letter freed me and gave me the chance at a happy Senior year. I took full advantage of that and I enjoyed every minute of it that I could.
With only a week or so left before graduation, I stopped by the main office a few times to try and catch our guidance counselor to thank her for what she had done for me. I felt like I owed her so much for it. Those last few days flew by as I so incredibly desired them to crawl. I wasn’t ready to face the world yet and I wanted more time with my friends. But graduation snuck up on me, and while it was very fun, it was also very sad. I spent so much of that summer hanging out with my friends because I knew it would never be the same again.
About a week before college began, I spent one last afternoon with one of my best friends before he went away for college. I’ll never forget taking him back to his house. I dropped him off and as I drove away I couldn’t hold back my tears. I cried the entire way home. I was not an emotional person at all…but that day broke my heart. I knew my life would be different after that and I was terrified.
With the chaotic last week of my Senior year I was never able to get a free moment with my guidance counselor. I’ve never forgotten what she did for me. And a part of me has always regretted not being able to personally thank her. She didn’t do it for the thanks though. She was a very kind and caring person, and she did it because she knew it was right. And my appreciation for that might not have been expressed to her, but it has always existed and always will.