On a sweltering summer morning, I was reading in my icy cold air conditioned room when I heard the roar of a truck engine. My sister was in her room next door and she yelled, “Look, it is a moving truck!”
“The moving truck is here?” I replied.
For the past month, I was anxiously waiting to see what the new neighbors would look like. However, I was also scared sick that the new neighbors would hate me or make fun of me. The last time a new kid moved into the neighborhood, he was not very nice. Cole was only a year older and yet he treated me like a baby. For example, when we would play basketball, he would hand me the ball and tell me how to shoot, even though I made the ball in the hoop more than he did. Plus, I liked my current friends already and I didn’t really want to ruin any friendships because of a new neighbor.
My mom yelled from the kitchen, “Go see who the new neighbors are.”
“No!” I yelled back, “I do not want to see who the new neighbors are. What if they do not like me?” Like I said, I was scared and thought that they would make fun of me.
“You have to,” she said
“Well, ok I will go over and introduce myself.”
Defeated, I slowly slid off my bed and trumped down the stairs to find my shoes.
A couple of minutes later, I was walking to the new neighbor’s house, wondering how they were going to react to me. I reached the house and I ringed the doorbell. I waited for what felt like an eternity, stuck in my own thoughts. Why am I doing this? I had plenty of other friends that I can hang out with. I froze, frightened as I heard footsteps inside the house walking toward the door. The door creaked open and, to my surprise, a kid about my age was standing at the door, staring right back at me.
I held back my panic and said, “Hi, my name is Joshua. I live next door.”
With a big grin spreading across his face, the boy replied, “Hi, my name is Alex. I just moved here from Florida. I am going into 1st grade.”
I realized that he really was my age. I suddenly had all the confidence in the world. He sounds so cool. And he is super friendly. Thanks Mom for making me go meet the new neighbor!
In an excited voice , I said, “Me too! Do you want to play basketball at my house?”
After spending the whole day playing all different types of sports, including basketball, we had to part ways because it was time for dinner. We said our goodbyes, and I sprinted inside to my mom and explained to her all of the fun I had that day. I had so much fun that I couldn’t hold back my emotions at the dinner table.
“Mommy! Alex, the kid next door, has his birthday tomorrow,” I told her, so excited that I met a new friend.
“We should go to the store and buy him something for his birthday. What does he like?” my mom asked.
“He loves to play basketball. We should buy him a new ball. He said he is getting a new hoop next week.”
“That is a great idea!”
The next day, I went over to his house and surprised him with the new basketball.
I am glad I met Alex when I did because he was an awesome friend to have next door. We did everything together; from sleepovers to football and baseball games in our adjoining backyards. Once we first met, I never thought of him as a new kid, just one of the best friends that I could ever ask for. But, that changed three years later when when my parents suddenly announced that we were moving to Michigan. This tore me apart because I had to leave Alex and all of my other friends I knew in Indiana. However, this experience helped me make new friends because I was not afraid to go up to someone I didn’t know and introduce myself and it made me more confident as a person. Overall, Alex was a great person and I am glad we were such good friends.