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A Portrait of a Modern Teenager
It was a cool autumn day as I woke up to begin my first day of high school. The cold air stung as I pulled the blankets off of me and I stood up to face the day. A long walk to the shower made me regret my choice of only wearing underwear to bed the night before. As I got dressed, I put a Nirvana album in the CD player. The rasp of Kurt Cobain’s influential lyrics motivated me for the day that lay ahead. When I walked out the door, I could see the bus that was to take me to school approach my stop. With haste, I made my way to the waiting bus. Finding a seat, I sat down, plugged in my iPod, and stared out the window for the remainder of the ride.
The bus pulled into the drop-off zone at the school. I noticed my new school amidst the few trees that scattered the campus. Students were making their way up a sidewalk that led to the school entrance. I had never gone to this school before, so the lack of familiarity mixed with the diversity of the student population and made for a very uncomfortable experience. Almost immediately, I decided that my best option was to lay low for the first few days. This plan lasted for only about 20 minutes, until I sat down in my first period class. It was my luck that brought Wade Dixon to me.
Wade had taken the seat next to me, and looked unusually concentrated on a pencil that he was maliciously disassembling. He was definitely different from normal teenagers, but he was also the type of person that didn’t take any crap. He liked to be right, and one could easily take him for a jerk. But if you could see a different side of him - a gentler, kinder side, then you might not think so. It was this that kept me as his best friend for as long as we were together. But it wasn’t Wade that got me into trouble, although he could be seen as a catalyst in one perspective. No, it was the girl Wade introduced me to. She was beautiful, funny, and had the best smile. Her name was Jamie Price.
As the days went by and school progressed, I began to think about Jamie more and more. We talked often, but from past experience, I had learned to never make assumptions about anything. Her being a cheerleader, I found myself attending many basketball and football games, an odd occurrence for someone like me, just for a chance to spend a little extra time with her. And even though I am one that is generally against the cheerleader type, I convinced myself that she was not like the others.
Valentine’s Day marked the approximate halfway point in the school year. Through conversation, I learned basic things about Jamie: favorite colors, foods, movies, etc. These things seemed vital if I wanted to stand out to her on Valentine’s Day. I managed to get together a bouquet of flowers, which were purple wrapped with purple wrapping paper. I also attached a note. When Valentine’s Day came around, I took the flowers to her, and I was sure that I made an impact. She said she loved the flowers, and that it was a really sweet and kind gesture; however she did not want to get involved with me. Heartbroken, I threw myself into a state of quiet existence. I barely talked to anyone, especially not her. Wade seemed to be the only person who could ever get anything out of me. Although this state of mind did make me very mad, both at Jamie and me, I never did stop loving her. I was completely bought on the fact that I was destined to be with her, but in retrospect, I wasn’t. This condition slowly deteriorated all mental aspects I had, and I was brought into a world that has gotten so many people in trouble.
Now let me back up a little bit. I was raised without a father until the age of eight. My stepfather was very strict, and was the most biased and cruel man I have ever met. There were even instances at which I would be hit by him. Around the age of fifteen, my stepfather left us to go live in Missouri. We never saw him again. I began to withdrawal away from my family, avoiding them whenever possible. My home life was a wreck. This was a huge factor in my depression.
Wade and I were very into music, rock and roll to be exact. We loved almost everything about it. You could say it was an unspoken code by which we lived. The one thing that we agreed that was bad about rock and roll was the drugs. We never had any desire to take them, because we knew what they could do. I sunk even lower than I had been previously. It seemed impossible to escape the depression I had fallen into.
My mind was mainly set on one thing around this point in time: Jamie. I knew that I could never be with Jamie, but I could not help myself from constantly flirting with her and trying to get her to acknowledge me in the slightest way. This was a goal that I could not accomplish, and soon I found myself giving up. Yes, you might think this would be easy. And yes, you might think I should have done that a long time ago, but if you do think that, I can guarantee that you have never been put into a position of that magnitude. Even though I decided to give up on Jamie, she wasn’t the only thing I was giving up on.
Wade and I were very good friends, and we trusted each other with anything and everything. In every relationship, there are rough times when you can’t be totally honest with the other person – this wasn’t one of those times. I was at Wade’s house one afternoon, trying to find the best way to tell him. I mustered up enough courage to take him up to his room, where we could talk in private. I told him my plans, and even though he objected, I assured him that it was the right thing and it was what I wanted. He let me go.
It was a bright summer day. The air was hot, and there were no clouds in the sky. I could taste the humidity on my lips, and knew it was the perfect day. I woke up completely happy and at rest, because I knew what I was about to do was what I wanted. I glanced over at my alarm clock, only to find that it was the early afternoon. My head was pounding, although I don’t know why. A quick look to my left allowed me to see that my door was open, a strange sight to see when I just woke up. The open door let in an unusual amount of noise that was coming from downstairs. I disregarded all of it, and set my eyes on the tool of my release, which was lying on my dresser. It was an old Swiss Army knife my grandpa had given me for my twelfth birthday. Slowly, I walked over to where it was, and pulled out the largest blade it contained. With shaky hands, I turned it back toward my chest, when I heard Wade walking up the stairs. He looked into my room, and saw me holding the knife to my heart. A few startled words left his mouth as he ran to me in shock. He grabbed the knife and threw it to the floor, narrowly missing my foot. With a tear in his eye, he took me by the shoulders and shoved me into the wall. His grip steadily grew stronger, until he finally let go, embracing me with his head resting on my chest.