The First Week, By Ciera Malbrue
The First Week
By Ciera Malbrue
Imagine being in a place where you see familiar faces every day. Surrounded by a sea of people, yet you're completely alone. Constantly wondering if anyone sees you at all. Not knowing how to break out of your shell or make new friends. Feeling sad and depressed, already stressing about how these next four years of high school would go. Well, that was me my first week of my freshman year in high school.
It was a really tough transition for me coming from a private school my whole life and knowing the same people since pre-k. The sudden transition to high school, only knowing a total of three people out of my entire class. I remember my first week like it was last week. I remember trying to find my classes, only to find out that the few people I did know from middle school were not in them. Luckily my best friend was coming to Lee and we had a couple of classes together. Nevertheless, I still felt alone, because she made friends so easily. She is always so outgoing, kind and approachable. I felt as though I was losing my best friend, and not making any new ones either.
I remember during that first week someone told me that I looked like the meanest person they ever met, and I was a total debbie downer. They said, “Ciera, I’m saying this because I have yet to see you smile this whole week.” Even though I told them that I do smile and I’m a very nice person once you get to know me, I realized they were right. I hadn’t smiled that whole week. Looking back, I wonder if it was because I was trying to shield myself from letting people know that I was terrified. Terrified of being in a new environment, with new faces. Terrified that me being myself, might be the worst thing ever.
The rest of that day all I could think about was the fact that I looked mean and unapproachable. I was extremely hurt by those words. Later that day, I got home and I called my friend Justin, who goes to a different high school. I called him in tears, and he immediately said, “Ciera what’s wrong?”
I asked him one question, “Do you consider me a debbie downer or mean?” I think he could hear how hurt I was.
He immediately answered, “Of course not, you are the sweetest person I ever met! Why?”
I said, “I didn’t think I would have this much trouble meeting people but knowing people think I’m mean makes me upset.”
“Forget about them, if they don’t want to get to know you then that’s their loss!” he said. Silence filled the air I didn't know what to say. All I know is I will never forget that moment when he comforted me in a way that made me smile again.
The next day when I was at school I saw the person who made me question myself and sadly I got upset again. The second I got home I called another friend of mine from middle school whom I can always trust to be honest with me. So, I called her and asked her, “Do you think I am a mean person?”
She answered me immediately with “Ciera when I transferred to Sacred Heart in fourth grade you were my first friend because you welcomed me. You are an amazing person. You shouldn’t let people’s words affect you.”
I knew she was right, then she said “Ciera, remember to be yourself, because a true friend will like you for who you are! That’s all that matters.” After that, I was not only determined to focus on my school work but also to be myself.
Later that week I tried to take my mind off of things and focus on my school work and being myself. Although, in the back of my mind, all I could think about was if I would ever make any friends. If anyone would even like me for me. It just so happened that day I had English class with my best friend and I didn't want to tell her I was having trouble making friends, or that I felt extremely out of place because I didn't want her to worry about me. But it turns out I didn't have to tell her anything. Considering she is my best friend, I should have come to the realization earlier that she knows me. The second she saw my face she automatically knew something was wrong. I told her it was nothing until she kept asking, and I finally gave in and told her everything about how I felt out of place and alone. I even started to cry as I told her this. She gave me hug and that day she didn't leave my side. During lunch, she introduced me to some new people I didn't know, and they were very welcoming to me. I started to make some new friends. I was ecstatic. I felt like things were finally starting to look up for me, and they did.
I realized that I shouldn’t let people’s opinions or words affect how I see myself. The only opinion that matters is my own. I now understand that not everyone is going to like you in life. And that is perfectly fine! All that means is that you must continue to be yourself and not change for anyone else in this world.