Monday, April 06, 2009

Middle School Sucks

I saw the saddest little thing this morning, and felt awful that I couldn't do anything to help. Somewhere deep down inside of me there is the girl that hasn't forgotten the sting and pain of all things middle school. And today she wants to cry for a stranger.

This morning my cats are/were driving me crazy, wanting to go in and outside every five seconds. One cat loves to see the kids at the bus stop (right next to my house), the other is terrified of the kids. I was watching the "Exodus of the Taller Children" (the middle schoolers) get on the bus, when I saw a girl on crutches, moving her fastest up the hill to the bus. There is no way the bus driver could have seen her, but I'm sure plenty of students did, including the last 4 or 5 to get on the bus, who were also running. The girl "ran" on her crutches as fast as possible. She made it about 5 feet from the bus when it pulled away. Even from inside my house I was yelling for the bus to stop and wait for her. I could hear her outside yelling at the bus. A moment later her yells turned into loud sobs.
Just then about 5 high school boys all came around the corner, heading to their bus stop. All of them looked at her like she was insane, and cut a clear path around her. She cried even harder.
I wished so badly I could go out there and say something to her, or do something for her. She hobbled and sobbed her way back down the hill towards her house. I decided against saying something to her. I figured she was feeling bad enough without knowing a total stranger witnessed her humiliation too.
I spent most of the 8th grade on crutches. I had severe knee problems that year. I could feel the girl's frustration and pain all too well. It isn't easy hobbling about on crutches, carrying a backpack, and an instrument too, without looking and feeling like a total fool. I wanted to give her a hug and tell her it gets better.
What would you have done? Would you have said anything or done anything (if you didn't know her)?
(and now it is almost time for one of my favorite parts of the day, "the exodus of the small children." watching the little kids leave for school each morning never ceases to amuse me. who knew so many children could be overcome by gravity so frequently??)

A little after I posted this I saw the girl on crutches hobble back up the street and get on the bus with the elementary school kids. I have no idea why!


  1. I am so depressed now. Poor girl. I think just observing was fine on your part.

  2. Oh no.

    I would want to offer to drive her to school - but I suppose someone would have sent out a creepy predator alert on me if I had tried to!
    I'd be cuffed for kidnapping or something crazy.

  3. I would have sat and observed as well, because you're right - in middle school, just assuming the whole world is watching is bad enough without actually having to have it confirmed.

    I wouldn't wish middle school on my worst enemy. And my brutal teasing came in early elementary, and I'd still take that over middle school any day of the week.

  4. My first thought, when reading this, would have been to go and help the girl. However, upon further thought, it may have tested the girls instincts of whether or not to talk to strangers and put her in an awkward position.

    Kids can be cruel and it's heartbreaking. However, I'm sure you'll also come across a ray of sunshine who will do something amazing and blow your mind. I hope anyway.

  5. I agree with everyone else. It probably would have embarassed her, better not to. Poor girl, I would NEVER do any level of school again. Maybe elementary school if the $ was high enough, but definetely not the other 2.

    Maybe the elementary school is close to the middle school? That's my guess as to why she got on the other bus.

  6. Cecelia11:40 PM

    Regarding the elementary bus, she might have called the bus barn and been told that she could catch that bus to school. I've heard of it before.


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