I’m turning fifteen in less than two months as I’m writing this, and I already feel like an adult.
I have just finished middle school as I’m writing this.
Middle school has shaped who I am more than any other time in my life. I used to be a childish, weird, and stupid child, but now I feel I’ve grown a lot smarter, stronger, more mature, and kinder ever since I finished seventh grade.
Seventh grade for me was my worst school year ever. But it was normal because I was getting used to a new life with new peers and new challenges. I was one of the more unusual and childish and stupid kids in my grade (despite me taking several honors courses). I was also what I like to call a “pop culture noob”. I wasn’t conversant with many of the trends going on at the time. I still am a pop culture noob today, but I’ve learned to not make it a big deal when it comes to my friendships and other relationships. I have also learned to be proud of my pop culture noobiness (if that isn’t a word, it is now!). Middle school is supposed to be a school that accepts who you are, and I have learned that it’s better to be proud of being me than to risk my life trying to be someone else.
Eighth grade was a piece of cake for me. By the beginning of eighth, I was a mature, caring and leery person. I was also a lot more solitary and independent than I was in seventh, and to this day I’m more of a quieter, easy going, laid back, independent, solitary person. I was also more mature when I started eighth, much more than I was in seventh, and I kept on growing mentally. I feel that I am mentally much older than I am physically. I haven’t always lived by maturity and morality, but I can thank my parents for changing that.
Many parents tell their kids not to do something and not tell them the true reason why. But I feel very grateful to my parents because they let me make my own mistakes and see the consequences myself. That really has shaped who I am today. I am always very cautious when in situations that I’m not used to, and I always try to be kind to anyone I meet, but I am always very judicious and not trusting of others.
Once, I got a girlfriend at school, and then she cheated on me and betrayed me. That was a long time ago. But I have learned from that ordeal to not trust anyone at first glance. Not to mention that I haven’t gotten a girlfriend since then. And I don’t want to get deep into the story, but I never really liked her. She was mean and a bully to basically everyone other than me. I just felt kind of bad for her so I decided to take her under my wing. Well, that was obviously a bad idea. I never really wanted a girlfriend even before this even started. I just felt bad for her, and she needed some help. And after she cheated on me, I decided I wasn’t ever going to get a date ever (or get married) no matter how bad I felt for a person. To this day, I have multiple friends that are girls but none of them are romantically dates in any way. They respect my feelings, and I am truly thankful to them for that.
Believe me, I’ve gotten out of some pretty treacherous situations in middle school by not trusting people.
Not trusting people has also led me to be a solitary person. A lot of people my age are utterly social. I’m not. Because I don’t count on everyone I meet, it takes a while for me to truly appreciate someone as my friend. I don’t just become friends with any peer that seems friendly that I meet. Also, it may be just me, but I tend to appreciate time alone. Since I’m not too social, I have learned during this time to take care of myself and do what’s right for myself. I have learned not to be dependent on other people, but rather to depend on myself.
A lot of people consider me “lonely”. That’s fine with me, but I’m not lonely. Well, I am, but I like being lonely. It gives me time to do what I like without other people interfering. And I don’t have to be lonely. I have plenty of friends, but they accept me as the person I am: solitary, independent and unsociable. I am very thankful to them for that.
Middle school has also taught me to love life. Before seventh grade, I was a depressed little boy that had suicidal thoughts. I have always thought I made too many mistakes, and I didn’t deserve to have a spot on this planet and this society. Also, that was when I used to judge myself based on what’s on the surface. But I learned from my experience that I was not alone. A lot of other people felt the same way about themselves.
I didn’t let myself feel the light, and never told myself that I was in several honors courses, and I was getting almost all As and high Bs, and I was an intelligent person, and I was a kind and caring person, and all of my other achievements, and that I had a lot of friends that liked me and a big family that loved me. I didn’t tell myself that because I didn’t have to tell myself that.
Other people did for me. All because of something I did: I expressed my feelings. I told my family how I felt, and they had in response many words of encouragement. They told me I have made far fewer mistakes than other kids they observed or even themselves when they were my age (I still have no clue whether that’s true now).
They told me that I might feel like I’m being corrected more often because I’m an only child, and without any naughty brothers or sisters, I felt like I was the only one being corrected, but they told me that in reality, I was an excessively moral teenager. And I can never thank them enough for their encouragement. Now I have realized that mistakes are learning experiences and making many of them is imminent for everyone. And I have learned to love life and appreciate my life, which I still do so today.
So, when I become a successful person and have a successful life, I am sure to thank middle school and everyone who has helped me along the way.
Copyright© 2018 Gerry Kramer.