I have never been so relieved for the weekend. School has become a chore again, and I hate it. When I am there, I am neither happy nor sad; I feel like I am there for the sake of other people, not because I want to be sitting in a chair for 50 minutes per class or trying to make sure I say the right thing when talking to new people—to feed them only the generic, overused parts of me. You can tell that’s what makes them happy; any mention of something that they cannot immediately relate to and a wave of boredom washes over their faces.
Having to be so neutral is stressful. All that’s keeping me sane are my friends from outside school and writing stories in the back of my notebooks during class, when my imagination, bottled up for most of the day, comes out in an inky black scrawl.
It isn’t like high school is stifling who I am completely—I can finally wear what I want without judgment, something I definitely couldn’t say for junior high. But the small things that I want people to know about me are the ones that have to stay smashed inside, under all the pages from autobiographies and names of classmates that I had to memorize.
I don’t know how successful I’ll be at making friends with the people here. I like them, but I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to open up to them the way I would like to. On the bright side, this situation has made me feel closer to my non-school friends, and I’ve found myself telling them things I probably would have kept inside forever otherwise. Sharing these things feels like a huge weight lifted off my ribcage, letting me truly breathe for the first time in my life.
I’ve become a total contradiction: totally closed off at school, more open that ever elsewhere. I wonder how long I can sustain this. ♦