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February 15, 2012
By , Oakley, CA
On a hazy day five years ago I was contemplating my options. I could stand to be tormented for ten more years until I finished my education, in order to reach a point in my life where I search for an occupation, or I could take a couple of minutes to myself and end everything then and there. I was constantly harassed and bullied to no end, and feel as though it would always continue. So as one could imagine, the latter was much more tempting to me at the time because of its false appearance of being more easy, and more sufficient.
As I looked around, I noted to myself some human beings of my own age, chatting away in a gaudy manner, and cramming some unknown consumable product into their rubber-like mouths. They were all scattered into different groups across the outside dining area. As though it was required, all the people in each of their goups looked vaguely similar to one another. A lonely tree grew next to a collection of girls who seemed to be unaware of my presence. As I watched dying leaves fall from the tree, and onto the cold cement, it only egged me on to think of the conceptual terror of death.
‘If I commit suicide’, the thought rang in my head, and I become steadily oblivious to my surroundings. ‘I would want to do it in a way that my parents would not have to clean up after me. I know that if I left stains behind my parents would not be able to properly move on. The easiest suicide for me would be to shoot myself in the head and end everything with a single bullet, but the mess would be frightful.’ A sudden image flashed into my head, of my cold, pallid body sprawled on my front lawn. The crimson dew on fresh cut grass would settle there until someone had the courage to turn on the sprinkler, in which the red would fade into a pink, then it would gradually sink itself into the earth, leaving no evidence behind that death had marked that bit of land. A chill ran down my arms leaving behind small bumps at the thought of this easy clean-up, and easy-forget situation that had squirmed into my mind.
I noticed a red brick structure across from where I sat. The building was fading, making it obvious that it had survived many rain storms through the years. ‘This structure was the holder of my current education, the holder of my current prison, only my fellow cell-mates were actually the prosecuters in disguise.’ I looked down at the lunch that had been resting in my lap. The sandwich had been smashed beyond recognition, and the apple had discoloured markings that were soft. All of this was from some kids kicking my bag earlier that morning. My partial bottle of water sat next to me, glistening, almost as if it was sweating in anticipation to see my next move. A thought ran by me, ‘I could always commit suicide here. My parents would not have to clean up, nor see the mess in the first place, and I would be able to give pay back to all the people that laughed at me, hit me, made insidius comments towards me, and harrased me. Even the ‘adults’ seeing this all this take place, chose not to help, and chose to remain soundless. If the first couple of months of middle school were this dreadful, what was the point of continuing on?’
Suddenly I whipped myself back to reality, as I had come to a realization that I was humming along to what a group of girls near me were trying to sing. It seemed that they also had noticed this fact and stopped making noise to gawk at me. As this happened, I shut myself up immediately and pretended to be utterly engrossed in my sandwich. I hoped desperately not to attract any more attention. When one of them stood up in a swift motion, instinctively I looked up towards her unpredictable movement. The sun was shining brightly behind her, making it hard to see, but her silhouette had some distinguishing features, such as her pure blue eyes and her gleaming smile that led into dimples. She slowly extended her warm hand downwards to me, as if she held light.
Suddenly the figure spoke with such fluidity of language that it seemed to enrap itself around me, “ Do you want to join us?”
With those simple words thrust towards me, my drowning body was dragged out of the thrashing sea water and brought onto a ship where I was generously given hope.
Without much thought I gathered my belongings, and followed the girl. Once I had stood up, I realized that she had a very short stature and seemed to be anxious to accomplish any of her movements. As soon as we reached her group, I noted the variety of character that each of the girls seemed to possess due to their eccentrically different clothing choices from each other.
Then the person I had been following finally spoke with such enthusiasm that I was startled, “My name is Kelli and my favorite animals are turtles!”
Kelli started to make gestures towards her group members.
“This is my best bud Danielle. She likes dolphins and always has goldfish snacks with her. She is also a super good singer.” She seemed like an introverted girl, with her hair in a bun, with strands of long blond hair coming out at all sides.
“This is Lucia, we have known each other since kindergarten.” She gestured to a Latina with curly hair, who was currently eating her lunch meticulously. “Her favorite color is green and she likes to talk way too much.”
There was a slight pause in the atmosphere while Lucia finished her bite of pizza, then she asked, “What’s your name? What do you like?”
For the first time in my life someone had actually asked me something about myself, and they seemed like they cared for the answer. My body was in shock, refusing to move to my command. I felt my throat retract into itself, and warm droplets ran down my face. It was not my apathy causing this but an emotion, sheer joy
“My name is Patte. Thank-you.”
I never told them what had been happening to me, but in fairness they never questioned me about the matter. They comforted me, and became my first friends. The horrid thoughts of that day had shattered like a stained glass window, an inseparable puzzle, never meant to be put reconfigured.

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