Eighth grade was the worst year of my life. I wrote about it in DEAR BULLY and never exaggerated a single point. I didn't have to. It really, truly, honestly SUCKED.
I would walk to school (alone) in absolute dread, knowing what waited for me behind those doors.
With no one to talk.
I would walk home (alone) on the verge of a daily nervous breakdown, agonizing over the mental brutality of the past few hours.
With no one to talk to.
Then one day I accidentally fell into step with somebody else walking home.
I didn't know her. We were in the same grade, but in none of the same classes.
She didn't seem to know how everyone hated me. Neither did she care, once she found out.
We looked alike. Brown hair, brown eyes, glasses, and braces. We could almost pass for sisters.
She talked a lot. She was loud and funny and kind-hearted and goofy. Her opinion of of my tormentors was simply this: screw 'em.
Easier said than done, of course. But suddenly...unbelievably...I had Someone On My Side.
Someone to talk to after months of talking to no one. Someone to laugh with. Someone to hang on the phone with. Somebody in my life who actually liked me and didn't give a single damn that nobody else did.
That someone was Pat. All these years later, guess what? We're still friends!
Did I ever thank you, Pat?
You may very well have saved my life. xox