All Nonfiction Bullying Books Academic Author Interviews Celebrity interviews College Articles College Essays Educator of the Year Heroes Interviews Memoir Personal Experience Sports Travel & CultureAll Opinions Bullying Current Events / Politics Discrimination Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking Entertainment / Celebrities Environment Love / Relationships Movies / Music / TV Pop Culture / Trends School / College Social Issues / Civics Spirituality / Religion Sports / Hobbies
- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
It’s Monday. The day you’ve been dreading since Friday. The sun shines in stark contrast to your mood. The birds are singing, you curse them under your breath. You contemplate the consequences of just staying home from school; it would be the fourth time this month. Remembering the threat of summer school, you reluctantly detangle yourself from the dingy, cotton sheets. You look around the room for a clean pair of pants. There doesn’t seem to be any, instead you pull on the faded blue jeans you wore yesterday, who would know the difference?
Still wiping the sleep from your eyes, you drag yourself downstairs to the kitchen. Your mom sits at the table, staring into her cup of coffee, a cigarette hanging loosely from the corner of her lips. “G’morning ma,” you say with a yawn. She doesn’t look up. Too nauseous to eat breakfast, you head to the bathroom. Leaning over the sink you stare into the mirror. A young man of fifteen stares back. His greasy face is covered with acne and scars. His teeth are chipped and yellowing. His nose, crooked and large, is running. With a frown, you recognize this young man as yourself. Realizing that the bus will be coming in a minute or two, you make an attempt at slicking back your hair into a pompadour of sorts. You then go to the coat rack and put on your dirty, old leather jacket. The sleeves are getting to be a bit short.
“Bye ma,” you say while heading out the door. She doesn’t reply. You rush to the bus stop, making it just in time. You trip while going up the steps; you feel your face redden as the other students barely try to mask their snickers. You shuffle down the aisle looking for a seat. Then you see her, Barbara Bishop. Barbara has long blonde hair, big green eyes, and an innocent smile that doesn’t match her reputation. Every day you promise yourself you will find the courage to sit with her, and every day you tell yourself the same thing-tomorrow. You finally find an empty seat. The whole ride you can feel bits of paper being flicked at the back of your head. You don’t turn around.
The bus finally arrives and you head toward the heavy wooden doors of Wilson High, Students shove by each other, scurrying to their lockers. You walk down the halls with your eyes lowered, until you finally reach room B-233, homeroom. You take a seat at the back of the room and examine the graffiti covering the desk, Mr. Boyd, and older man with wild-looking tufts of white hair takes attendance. “Alfred Stone?” He called. You raise your hand and he continues on down the list.
The bell rings and the class gets up quickly, chairs scrape the floor. You walk to your first period class, English. You sit down. Your classmates are buzzing with conversation, you stay silent. The teacher walks in and promptly proceeds to collect the homework you didn’t do.
Alfred?” The teacher raises an eyebrow.
“Yes?” You copy her expression.
“Homework?” She asks with her hand held out.
“I didn’t do it,” you say quietly. She draws her hand back.
“Alfred, would you please stand up at the front of the room,” she says loud enough for the entire class to hear. Everyone turns to watch. You slowly get up from your chair and walk, shaking, to the front of the room. “Now Alfred, the homework was to write a brief autobiography. Considering you didn’t write it, perhaps you could tell the class about yourself,” the teacher says with a smirk.
You can feel the blood rushing to your face and the knot in your stomach. You look out to the class. They don’t know you as anyone other than the pimply kid that doesn’t talk to anyone. This is your chance to let them know everything. To let go of what you’ve been feeling deep inside for all these years. The things you feel that keep you silent; the resentment toward your father for leaving you, the fear for your mother who hasn’t spoken a word since dad left, and the anger toward God for letting it all happen. You consider saying it all, holding nothing back, but when you look out again to the class, embarrassment takes over and before you know it, the contents of your stomach are on the floor and you’re wiping the corners of your mouth. The guys laugh and the girls grimace. You run, out of the class and out of the school. You find yourself outside your house and consider knocking. Instead, you barge in. You shout, and toss your book bag to the floor. You look to the table and your mother is still sitting there, staring into her coffee. Why did you come home at all?