My first day of junior high school is now vibrant in my brain. In reality, the day I was accepted to junior high school on January 4, 1980, provided me with a new life experience. With my father laid off from his current job due to an economic downturn, I had no idea what the new life in school had in store for me. Indeed, we lacked sufficient funds to meet the many human needs because we had invested almost every last penny to move from New York to Houston, Texas.
On a cold morning, I awakened earlier than usual and braced myself for the big day. After taking our delicious breakfast my mother accompanied me to the new school. On the way to school I could see the beautiful and fascinating landscape which included both natural landforms and human elements. The beauty of landscape was so attractive such that I even forgot for a while the hardships we were going through since my father lost job. Besides the peace of mind I gained from the cool and calm landscape, my mother kept pouring numerous words of wisdom and encouragement in my ears.
After half hour drive, we reached our destination, junior high school in Houston, Texas. We walked straight to front office where we waited anxiously to be admitted. Soon my time to be attended arrived and we entered into the office where we met the admission officer. The admission officer was a friendly and social short gentleman. In spite of the fact that we lacked some of essential items required for admission he went ahead and admitted me. His kindness and compassion really made me feel composed even though fear and anxiety still ran across my mind in regards to the new environment. After we completed everything my mother had to leave but before she left she gave me a warm hug and encouraged me to be strong.
Immediately my mother left, I was handed over to hostel prefect. The prefect was a young, energetic and happily looking boy. He was mandated to show me the hostel where I would be residing and also assist me to settle. No sooner had we entered the hostel than a tall and shaggy looking boy approached us. Immediately the new boy snatched away my suitcase, opened it and started removing my personal effects. As I tried to reclaim my suitcase, a sharp and tough blow landed on my joyful and smiling face. At that moment I felt unconscious and sharp pain filled every part of my body. After few minutes I gained my conscious, surprisingly the prefect stood behind me helplessly and I wondered what kind of a leader he was. The incident angered me and I felt like retaliating but I was frightened something worse could still happen to me. The ugly looking boy picked all my personal effects and dared me to follow him or speak about the incidence. I stood there confused with tears rolling down my cheeks. The prefect held my hand and comforted me. He frankly told me that the boy was well known bully who frustrated and threatened many students and more also the new students. Furthermore, he told me that there are very many others with similar traits and thus I needed to take heart and never try to confront them. He took me to my cubicle where I kept my suitcase and we got out of the hostel.
After visiting various areas of the school, the prefect left me and he directed me to join other students so that I can familiarize with them and make friends. The first group I joined was full of mockery and hatred. Whenever I talked they used to laugh at me because of my New York assent. I remember at one time they asked me where I had been living and the moment I responded, ‘’New York’’ everyone was seriously laughing at me. I felt so much embarrassed to such extent that I hoped the ground to open and swallow me wholly .In fact, every student used to make fun of me in every aspect of my life. Some of students went a step higher to call me fun names such as ‘’ Yankee.’’ Moreover, they were mean with their belongings, ideas and knowledge.
Despite the horrible experience I encountered during my first day in junior high school, I never got discouraged. I stood firm in upholding integrity values such as love, honest and forgiving. As the time went on I was able to make new friends and life returned to normal. In addition my father started working and I was able to meet all my needs in school and also live happier and quality life. The first day experience in junior high school taught me how to be a responsible adult. Similarly, I have taught my children to embrace values such as kindness and respect while mingling with others.