August 10, 2011

A Quick Shout-Out...

I ate lunch with my dear friend Katye last week.  I met Katye in the 6th grade.  At the end of elementary school, nearly all of my friends lived in the city and were zoned for fancy middle schools with really cool mascots like the VIKINGS and the WARRIORS. I was zoned for Page Middle School (PMS).  Our mascot was an unprovoked but relentlessly furious panther... go figure.  With nearly all of my friends going to other schools, I was left to venture into adolescent-ville alone. I was at a new school, with new people, and the only soul I knew (one of my best friends, Katherine) was assigned to a different team than me.

For a month, I wandered from class to class without many friends. I wasn’t lonely, but I wasn’t necessarily comfortable.  (Don't feel sorry for me...I talked to people, I just didn't necessarily connect with anyone.  Everyone was obsessed with bad words,  no fear t-shirts, and our science teacher's ferrets... It was an unsettling time.)  One day in mid-September, God sent me a miracle.  My school secretary walked into my 1st period science class, told me to gather my things, and meet her in the hall.  When I walked out of the classroom she explained that there had been a mistake and I was supposed to be in the gifted program.  (I’m brushing my shoulders off as you read this.)  (What is my "gift" you ask?  I'm still undecided but know that my double jointed thumbs and amazing yoda impression are among top possiblities.)

The secretary led me to my new classroom and as she explained to my new teacher what had happened, I  quickly grabbed the only open seat available.  I was excited for the change.  But still… no familiar faces.

Later that day, this really pretty girl sitting next to me started asking me questions:  Where did I live, what school did I attend last, what was my favorite Ace of Base song...important things like this.  The next day she initiated a conversation again, and the next day, and the next.  By the 2nd week of my new class I had made a new friend!  Somehow, Katye had looked beyond my awkward, "new student", clumsy exterior and decided I was worth getting to know. 

A few months later she invited me into her circle of friends (everyone else had gone to school together since kindergarten) and the rest of the gals welcomed me in too.

When I moved to the mountain, Katye did not forget me.  For years, she sent me letters and packages.  We visited each other in high school, and as adults we still stay in touch.  Even though we only get to see each other once or twice a year, things pick up exactly where they left off and I leave feeling so blessed she decided to take a chance on the quiet new girl who looked like this:

See how sweet she was? (For the record, that sweater was the bomb. Warm but breathable, soft but not soft enough to leave small threads around.  To all the Page Middle students who were jealous of this look, it can still be found at Gap in the men's section.)

Here we are after lunch, 16 years later.  

Thanks Katye!!!
By the way, PMS rules and I'm a PANTHER fan forever.
mae mae

No comments: