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Falling

When I was five, I lived in New York. I didn't know, nor care if I was popular or not. I was just there, and played my own way. I later grew to learn which side belonged to me. As I look back, it seemed to me that I was the most forgotten and least likable girl in my class.

Before we moved, I had two best friends, Sarah and Emily. I always preferred visiting Sarah's house because she knew how to play along with me. Unlike, how Emily dictated what I could and could not play with.

My mom also forced me to play with some twin boys. They were always rude to me. Even though I told mom, she still dropped me off at their house to play.

The best playmate was my four-year-old next-door neighbor, Michael. Either he or I would climb the fence just to play. Even after he moved, he came back one day just to visit me!

We moved shortly after that. I had no significant ties to New York anyway. I had high hopes for this new place I would call home.

The events of that first week crushed my hopes. We moved halfway through the school year. It didn't matter much for someone in kindergarten, but I worried that nobody would like me. I wondered if they thought I was weird or something. However, the days passed without anyone talking down to me.

When the day was over, everyone had to find a bus and go home. I knew my mom handed me a note that morning and told me to show it to a teacher who would help me. The lady smiled and directed me to a bus and told me to show it to the bus driver. I nervously walked over, stepped on the bus and held the note to the lady. She glanced at the note and me. Then she told me to get off her bus.

I don't know about any of you, but I was scared out of my mind, it was just me out there, standing by myself. My brothers' and sister were still in their classes, because only the kindergartners had half days of school. So, I stood there by the side of the building, trying to stop myself from crying, when the teacher noticed me and led me back to the bus with the mean bus driver.

They argued for a moment and the teacher instructed me to sit down in the first seat. I had no clue what they argued about, well me obviously, but my house was along the route the bus driver took. There was no reason she had to throw a fit.

I ran to my daddy after that terrifying moment in my life. He even let me have as many Oreo cookies as I wanted, after I told him what happened.

After a half a year passed, I felt as if I was in the same situation. First grade year and today was a make or break moment for me. This year I would make some friends, or that was what I told myself before entering the class.

I sat at a table with three boys. They got along with each other. What I didn't realize, when I first started talking to them, I became their object of ridicule.

No one else in the class talked to me either. It was just those boys. So of course, I would agree to a friendly game of tag. No one else was going to even talk to me. Why would I play with them?

They were faster than I was. They always kept their distance from me. If they were "it" or not, they always came up from behind and shoved me forward. Most days I was able to stay on my feet. Other days, I landed palms first into the mulch.

Did I cry? No, I got up brushed off my hands and said, "Next time, I will be faster." I ran quickly to the jungle gym to escape. Most called it the castle, because its bars were protective like a fortress.

I climbed up to sit in my favorite crook and scouted out one of the three boys. It wasn't hard because they always conspired together. They were some of the biggest first grade boys. They were taller than I was and I was always in the top five tallest students from grades 1-5.

Weeks passed, turning into months and those three boys played a cruel game. During spelling tests, which are supposed to be silent, they would whisper amongst each other. They turned to me and snickered. I took the bait and spoke out. I went to the office more times that year than anyone else in the whole school, just because of those three boys.

One day I had enough of them, and tried talking to two other girls in my class. They were friendly enough. When I saw them again later in life, they were stuck up snobs.

I figured at that point, I couldn't just find new people to call friends to rid myself of those boys. I had to defeat them, outsmart them, and have them crawling in the dirt. I waited all winter to try out a plan I devised.

I would wear gloves to protect my palms from the splintered mulch ground, just in case they shoved me down again. I would wait until we were lining up to go back to class and then I would tag one. I would run far back, so that the teacher would yell at us to get back in line. I would be safe.

However, I could only find one of my gloves. It would have to do. I had only one shot at proving if it worked or not. Everyone asked me why I had one glove. They must have thought I was mad. I told them it was to protect my hand if I fell again. Finally, it was time, and I lightly pressed my palm against the flat of his back, said you're it and turned before he could react.

My legs carried me as far and as fast as I could. I nearly reached the glider that was a little more than halfway across the playground. I felt two hands shove me down as hard and as angry, as they could.

I remember skidding to the ground. Mulch filled my glove so that the splinters and the wood chips clung against my palm instead of protecting me from them. My other hand was unprotected and stung more than the previous countless times before.

I stood up shaking, not crying, because it hurt, or it was unfair, that those boys treated me as they did, but because my plan failed. My first plot to win and succeed failed and my reward was the boy standing over me, laughing his pants off.

I loathed him. I wanted to hit his taunting smile clean off his face. Instead, the teacher snatched me up and rushed me to the nurse's office. I saw the confused and bewildered faces of my classmates. They were clueless as to what happened.

After that, no one talked to me, not even the boys. I played by myself and stayed on the swings until recess was over every day.

I was actually relieved when the teacher took me to another first grade classroom at the end of the year instead of taking me to the second grade wing along with the rest of the class.

I had a new start, away from those boys. I decided to stick to myself a little more that year, and not just trust anybody. Nobody decided to try to get to know me anyway. At least not until, I met Ishtar in the third grade.

She became my first real friend, though I talked to a few others. I talked to her every day for that whole year. She essentially got me interested in the supernatural. A year later, she was in another classroom and acted, as if I didn't exist in the first place.

A plus was that my best friend at the time, Alexandra was in my class and we were as thick as glue. We were never one without the other. Eventually, the teachers ended up asking where our shadow was if we weren't together.

I hoped it would remain that way. I had my one best friend. It didn't matter, if everyone else had no clue what my name was, even though I knew who they were. As long as, one person could see how wonderful and fun I was, I didn't care about the rest. It was their loss.

In fifth grade, my best friend changed on me. Five years we knew each other, but she seemed to forget that I was her best friend. Especially, when the new girl, whose name shall never be mentioned ever, came along. We had similar names, as there was only a letter difference.

One would think that a girl, who was there, knew everyone's names, even those not in her class. She was there for six years and would be more memorable than a girl who was there for one week tops.

Her name became my name in two weeks. When I glared at the person, they took offense. It still burned me to this day that she, not only stole my best friend, but also stole my necklace. She told me that her and me were not friends because and I quote, "I never asked to be friends." I let her borrow my necklace that she stole from me. A week later pulled that on me. Can anyone blame me for hating her?

Even worse, my so-called best friend of seven years, in turn decided to tell me, "You know, I never wanted to be friends with you in the first place."

Halfway through sixth grade, they bullied me. They wore me out. Everyone discarded me. Nobody liked me, so I hid.

Even today, I kept hiding, because everyone abandoned me. They never gave me a chance. I felt cursed from the start, the bus driver disliked me from the moment I stepped on the bus, why would anyone else like me either.

I was surprised that despite all that has happened, no matter how depressed and gloomy I was I pulled through. My skin remains unscathed by any blade, I looked death in the face and said, "Nah, I have something important to do in the future, I can feel it. I can't leave just yet."

I kept falling, but I always stood back up. Maybe I was stupid, or brave, or maybe my subconscious knew something that I have yet to realize.

There is no doubt in my mind. I will fall in the future. Every single time I do, you can count on me standing right back up.
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