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Emily Williams

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We had been assigned to read The Teacher Who Changed My Life by Nicolas Gage that night. I, being the reading nerd in the class, had actually read unlike most of my classmates. It was an inspirational story about a teacher who had, in a tough-love manner, who inspired a Greek immigrant to be a journalist. Our English teacher assigned us to write an essay on someone who inspired us. He gave about five minutes to write a paragraph to start off, and then he set us up in groups of three or four to share our paragraphs. We had to pick on person out of the group to read their paragraph to the class. In my group was Curtis, the class clown, Anna, someone I admittedly only talked to when I needed to, Emily, someone I hadn’t really talked to because she sat on the other side of the room from me, and me. Curtis read his paragraph about his wrestling coach and I read my paragraph about my best friend who helped me through a rough summer. Then Emily spoke up to read hers because Anna, like the rest of us, was too embarrassed to read a personal story.

Emily started off telling us how her step-dad and she went fishing and how he meant so much to her. Then she told us he had died a year before and her eyes filled with tears. For a second or two I hesitated on what to do, and Curtis and Anna were doing the same thing. Then I scooted my chair closer to hers and put my arm around her shoulders and she put her head on my shoulder. It took a few moments for our English teacher to realize that the assignment had turned emotional. When he came over, he asked Emily if she wanted to go to the bathroom to be in private and she ran off, and I followed. Honestly, I was scared that she didn’t want company but she did. I held her as she cried and told me that her step-dad was her dad when her real dad hadn’t been there.

When Emily and I headed back into the classroom both of our eyes were red and my legs were a bit shaky. We sat down in time for Curtis to read his paragraph out to the class and the next Monday I didn’t know what to expect because we were writing out our whole essay and I was worried about Emily. Though she and I had never really talked before the Friday we wrote our paragraphs, I believed we had formed a bond. I feel as if I'm looking out for her and if I would have forgotten her after I graduated, I sure wouldn’t after that Friday.



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