It Only Takes a Friend

March 9, 2013
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It's hard for a ten year old to have to come to terms with the fact that she isn’t normal. That she isn’t liked. That she will never be accepted into society as a normal girl.

Three years later and it continued to weigh her down. The thought of her lonely future haunted her day and night. Her days provided no distraction from the poison that had long since consumed her. She had no friends to talk about insignificant, but happy topics with. She had no escape. She'd sit in class, staring out the window, wondering what it would be like to be normal. Wondering what it would be like to have somebody, anybody who cared about her.

The kids only laughed and called her names, oblivious to the fact that they were fueling the fire that burned her alive. They were pushing her, farther into the deep, dark hole she had already started to sink into.
Of course, nobody wanted to pull her out of the hole. Nobody wanted to befriend that weird girl who stuck to herself, who never smiled, never talked. That consistently sad girl who, no matter how hard she tried - and believe me, she tried- could never be happy.

There was a thickly veiled cloud around her that affected anyone who tried to go near. It was contagious to them. A sickly disease, passed around to anyone in close proximity.
She was quarantined, sent to the far corner where no one dared to go.
At recess, she'd sit underneath the huge willow tree, her only companion. She'd sit in silence, staring at the kids who laughed and played, wishing she could join them.
But she might as well have been the only person in the world, for she was alone.

Until the day a new kid joined the school.

When he first arrived, he refused to introduce himself to the class, refused to say a word.
The kids all smiled and tried to talk to him, but he walked right past them to the desk in the back of the room, in the other corner of the class.

He sat alone, like her, staring at the clock on the wall, watching it tick ever so slowly.

At recess, that day, she made her way over to the willow tree, as usual, only to find him sitting where she usually sat. She turned to go, not up for the usual jeers and names that entailed each confrontation, but he looked up from the grass he was plucking from the ground and smiled. A small, almost invisible smile, but the biggest smile ever directed at her. Her returning smile was involuntary; it felt almost natural, even though it was anything but. He shifted slightly, making room for her beside him. It was nothing special, but that tiny gesture was enough to make her heart swell.

And that’s how they sat every day. Under the tree in companionable silence, lost in thought.
Instead of just her, all alone in the world, they had each other.

The facts didn't change. She knew she still wasn't normal, would never be normal, never be completely liked.
But even though they still weren't like the other kids, laughing and chatting and running around, for once in her life, she was happy.

And to think, all she needed was a friend…

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