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DerKodeMeister
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21 Mar 2011, 10:04 pm

I'm getting closer and closer to graduating high school. Two and a quarter months or so to be more specific. During the past year or so, I've had quite a bit of time to really reflect on my progress socially throughout the last 4 years. I suppose I will list the years in order and then do a kind of summary/reflection at the end.

Freshman Year:
I went to the gigantic public high school in a large city in my state that everyone from my small town without a high school got sent to. The kids in the small town by 8th grade grew fairly hostile towards me, and my reputation seemed to have carried over at least a bit in to the new school. I made some friends that I had some very memorable times with, but I've only talked to 2 of them at all since I left 3 years ago. This winter was the absolute worst of my life though, and depression hit me like a freight train. My friends were understanding but I did alienate them for a couple months as I spent pretty much all day every day (including during school) asleep. My relationship with a girl I had met at a summer camp in 8th grade was still going great.

Sophomore Year:
Under recommendation of my IEP team and support from my town, I transferred to a small (50 kids) private school for kids with emotional/learning/social disabilities. Here I met some truly amazing people, Chris, Greg, Simon and Will. All of whom had been in the school since 8th grade. I was pretty quiet and scared out of my mind about my future for most of the year, and still fairly bitter and untrusting of people from my past experiences, so our friendships were kind of distant at first. The winter was bad, but it was definitely noticeably better. My girlfriend had moved about 2 hours away from me though, due to divorce/custody issues with her parents, and eventually she broke it off. We had been going out for 2 years.

Junior Year:
My friendships with Chris, Simon and Greg really started to flourish not too long before junior year began. My social skills had really started to improve, my outlook on life was good. At this point Will was a senior and he was very socially shy and awkward, and I had kind of began to realize and accept that Will and I would probably never become good friends. I also met Emily, a very shy girl with bipolar who was tired to death of her life and people and her school system and also transferred to Parker as a leap of faith-type-thing. The first day of school during introductions I remember pointing her out to my friend Chris, who promptly went to go introduce himself to her, being the outgoing friendly guy he was. I naturally stayed back and observed, being shy and lacking confidence. She was in my physics class and at first I was very shy and didn't know what to say but by that October was talking to her a bit. She and Chris got in to a relationship that December that ended pretty badly a few months later. Greg and I spent a good chunk of time trying to help them. It was during then that Greg and I realized that we were both extremely apt at analyzing and solving their problems, and even greatly complemented each others thinking style, and so started moving on to a variety of more subjects and becoming very good friends. Simon and I also started growing a bit closer, and Chris and I a lot closer. Emily and I started talking a lot by the end of that year, and she asked me many times, literally every day, for me to sort of officially accept her as a friend of mine. I was hesitant at first, although I have no idea why and I regret it now, but by the end of that year I did indeed consider her a close friend. The winter's at this point started really improving, and I had never felt more confident socially or academically before the end of this year.

Senior Year:
It was during this summer that I began to notice that something was kind of off. I thought I had all these great friends now, and they all seemed to be hanging out with each other all the time. So why wasn't I getting invited? It took me a long time to realize, and Greg also helped me figure this out, but it's hard when you live in such a rural part of the state to remember just how far you live away from people. Literally my friend closest to my house from Parker is Greg who lives 35 minutes away. He, Chris, and Emily, as with most of their other friends, all live 5-15 minutes away from each other. So judging the distance between us all, we still were hanging out like every other weekend or so. So I felt a bit better about it.
The beginning of the year was pretty great. People got licenses and were starting to drive to see each other and stuff. Simon and I started becoming really close, and then kind of drifted apart as he began to really worry about what he was doing after high school. I even started to develop some feelings for Emily, but they kind of subsided as I remembered how hard it really was to get my parents to help me make plans to visit my friends, and she experienced similar things. Driving 45 minutes to see her every weekend was going to be hard and expensive. A girl transferred to Parker over the winter that I took a liking to, and pretty much everyone at the school thought we were going to wind up together, but all of a sudden things got complicated for no apparent reason and I stepped aside. Greg and I still talked and hung out a bit, extremely frequently at first but less as the year went on. Chris and Emily began to start looking like they were getting back together around that December and finally did around January. A lot of people, especially Chris, have started getting freaked about the future and are starting to get kind of depressed or tense. I feel like I'm kind of drifting apart from him which makes me really sad or worried but my other friends are sure that he's just going through a rough time. I've offered my support as much as I can but it just hurts to see him without his trademark sense of humor and just overall brightening personality.

Anyways, I guess the reason I've written all this out is that I feel pretty nostalgic about high school already. Overall the people I met at this school have been hands down the best friends I've made so far, and I've had some truly awesome times with all of them. But I feel saddened though, because I think back on all of the memories and remember the times where I turned down their support when I was feeling sh***y or rejected hanging out with one of them because of something else or whatever. I guess it's come to the point where I wonder just how good of a friend they consider me. We're all graduating really soon, and although we all say we'll absolutely stay in touch, and none of us are going to be more than 2 states away, I still have doubts. I guess due to my low self confidence and depressive nature I've felt more of an outsider in the group, I've just kind of always feared that they resent my sensitivity; I know they've talked about other kids with similar problems behind their backs pretty freely, and sometimes I get afraid that they do the same for me, and that they don't really consider me that much of a friend and once high school ends will promptly drift apart.

I know a lot of you will probably say that none of these people really matter, and that once I get to college I will completely forget about them, and you're probably right. Right now though I'm feeling really nostalgic; I love my friends dearly and hope strongly that I don't drift apart from any of them, especially Emily, Chris, and Greg; they've all supported me and been there for me the most over the years, and they are the ones I've tried my hardest to be there for. I just seriously can't express how much gratitude I feel towards them, although I try to hold a lot of it back because I don't want to weird them out too much, hence this message. ><

Thanks for reading.

Tristan.


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mikeseagle
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21 Mar 2011, 10:34 pm

Hi Tristan:

Good story. I'm glad you wrote it out and I had to chance to read it.

I will not tell you that they do not matter to you. They do matter a great deal to you. They helped you and you helped them out through a rough time in life. Nothing matters more than having friends like that.

Since they mean so much to you, you will never forget them. I have friends twenty years ago that helped me through a really bad time of my life. I have never forgotten about them. My feelings for them are just as strong for them today as it was twenty years ago. How can you forget about friends that meant so much to you?

Sure when you go to college, you will find other friends that will hopefully mean as much as your high school friends to you. You may stop thinking about them as your new college friends take up more of your daily life. But you will never truly forget about your high school friends,

What you are feeling is natural. Your losing contact with people that meant so much to you. Going into new directions without their help. Feeling that maybe you where not that close and that is why you will drift apart is also natural. But from what you wrote I would say they consider you a good friend.

Try to stay in touch with Chris, Simon, Greg and Emily as you go your separate ways. Friends like that are worth the trouble of staying in touch :)


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