Author's note: As a 16-year-old journalist living in suburban Chicago, I’ve always sought to reach a wide... Show full author's note »
Bad TimingWhen we got to the cemetery I felt strange. The feeling is hard to describe, but Lindsey Lohan said it best in “Mean Girls.”
“Have you ever walked up to people and realized they were just talking about you?”
That’s what it felt like when I saw my father’s side of the family. They were examining me as if trying to compare notes and see who was right about the way I was brought up. I don’t like being around my father’s family too much. I can never act like myself; I am always expected to behave the way someone who just graduated from finishing school would act.
After mingling with some old relatives it was time to go to the grave. I sat there silently crying, while my uncle talked about my dad. I wasn’t crying because I wanted to or because it made me feel better. No, I was crying because it was expected of me. With tears rolling over the cheeks I inherited from him, I watched in horror at how carelessly the workers lowered his casket. To them he was just another body in a blue box, but to me it was like they were burying half of my soul. I wanted to run, scream, kick, and act like a complete child. But, I didn’t. I stood there quietly the way a young lady should.
I know my mother worries when she sees me cry, which is why when she asked me that horrible question I answered, “I’m OK. Can we go shoe shopping?”
“I’m sure you have all heard of the tragedy that has happened,” my journalism teacher said in a solemn voice.
A beloved student has died and now the school paper has to do an In-depth on him. I thanked my lucky stars that I was not the one who will have to write it. After listening to various stories of the student I was unable to sleep. I just lay in bed that night and starred at the ceiling. I wasn’t thinking about anything in particular, I just kept staring till my alarm rang.
“You then add three to both sides and set it equal to zero.”