September 22, 2006

One is Lonely

For Weekly Anamnesis #38 OBVIOUSLY

Obviously there were no seats left for me at our usual table with my two best friends in the whole world. Walking away from the lunch line with my tray, I could see that everyone at that table was reading a piece of paper, and it must have been really funny because they were all laughing.

As I approached them they quit laughing abruptly, and the person holding the paper shoved it under the table so hard I could hear it crunch.

“I guess I’ll just sit over here,” I said as I walked past them to sit down at the next table. There was dead silence from them, and suddenly a note, folded into the shape of a football, flew over my shoulder and landed in my plate.

I didn't want to open it there, since I could feel all their eyes on me, and their silence crashed through me like a freight train. But it was torture to wonder, so I opened it.

We really don't want to be friends with you anymore.
You have been fun and all, but really we just want to
be best friends, only not with you.

One is lonely,
Two is perfect,
Three's a crowd.

We hope you understand that we just want to be friends.

Val and Jen

I never knew that humiliation burned so bad. I had never felt betrayal of this magnitude. Fourth grade isn't supposed to be life-altering. I'm sure I would have handled it better if they had just held back from showing the whole class their note, but they did, and I knew I would never be the same. It didn't help matters that Val was in my ward for the rest of my life until I was eighteen.

I have many people to thank for the events that occurred as a result of this note...

Thanks Val and Jen, for showing me what kind of friend I don't want to be. From that note on, I never ever wished I was one of the "popular" kids.

Thanks, Mom, for being such a great listener and for letting me cry my sorrows out on your sweet shoulder. You have always been so good at that.

Thanks, E. and V., siblings extraordinaire, for being my best friends for the next five years, until I was brave enough to attempt being friends with someone outside the family.

Thanks, God, for giving me minimal singing talent, and Val and Jen, for helping me to be too shy to want to sing solos for my choir teacher, which led me to switch to Art 1 class in 10th grade.

My art ability gave me self confidence for the first time since the 4th grade.



6 comments:

Cele said...

I can remember incredibly cruel acts - such as this - from my childhood days. I have long lived with the mantra, Where we have been, is who we are.

I hope that your past has made you stronger. If not I hope you find the place within you that will allow you to be strong. That your faith in your family, God, and yourself will leaded through life, taking each step in stride. And that you will learn to use the good your find and throw away the rest.

Eric said...

DUH BBFE! Best Friends Fore Ever!!! What a cruel time with those losers growing up like that. I have never wanted to be popular, but just like we talked about the other night, I find it interesting that we are despite ourselves...
Our family is more solid because of those times I believe. We HAD to be there for each other. I'll never forget the ONE time that i told you I wanted to hang out with MY friends alone. I wish I'd never done that. In the end, even those friends saw me turn on them, as you needed me more. You're a much more forgiving person than I. As the eldest and wisest let me simply offer you these words of comfort:

Keep the commandments! Keep the commandments! In this there is safety. In this there is peace.
He will send blessings! He will send ble hess ings! Words of a prophet, keep the commandements. In this there is safety and peace.

See, don't you feel better already! Leave it to a big bro to remind you that there are much more simple things that will give you that icy chill in your stomach that a bunch of silly 4th graders!

In retrosepct, it really was a blessing. Because of the trauma of that song, you lost your desire to sing, an instead expressed yourself through art. Now, if we could just figure out what childhood experience kept me from drawing.....

Eric said...

http://www.lds.org/cm/showsong/1,18647,5282-1-2-146-%20,00.html#nullLink

Copy & paste to enjoy as often as you like!

skinnylittleblonde said...

Good for you!
My father has always said 'Success is the sweetest revenge'...you prove his words to be true.
Kids can be so cruel, but even at the young age of 4th graders, they should have known better!
If their parents didn't teach them decency & they were raised by the TV...didn't they ever watch Little House on the Prairie?! They were Nellies! You & you family were the Ingalls.

Sister Mary Lisa said...

I realized I referenced this episode from 4th grade twice in my blog so far. That must mean that somehow I'm not quite over it yet. Maybe soon!

Thanks for all your kind words!

Eric, I don't remember any time you wanted to go out with your friends without me, so maybe you are allowed now to shed your guilt over this incident, huh? :) Also, that song sucks. I wish I could unremember that song.

:)

Kita Kazoo said...

It is interesting to me that it has come up again now when you are about to lose friends again. If I was a praying sort I'd send some for you. I know there's more hard times head. You are strong and intelligent. I wish I had gotten out when I first learned about Adam God...

Cyber Hugs,
Kita

Love, Luck & Laughter
Nut Job Jen