In AP English, on a Thursday before break, we did this thing in class. We had signs decorate with our names on them on our desks. Mine had my name slowly getting smaller as you went down the letters, and it ended in a question mark. We went around the room with pens (I borrowed one from my teacher after two of mine produced no ink) writing down on sticky notes nice things about each person and sticking them on the signs. I was focused. I made sure I left one for every single person. When I got back to my desk, I had purple, blue, yellow, green, white, and pink sticky notes on my sign. I couldn’t help that notice that while I had a lot, I didn’t have as much as Megan-who sit’s next to me. She’s gorgeous with non frizzy dark brown hair, shiny brown eyes, clear skin, and the kindest smile with the most adorable laugh. I love her. I was a little scared to look at what people had said about me. I remember when I did something similar in sixth grade and I’d gotten a lot of the same things: kind, smart, good friend, good dresser, I sort of felt like the kinds of things you put down when you really don’t know what to say. Or you just don’t really have anything to say.
I was surprised, a little disappointed, and a little melted all at once.
The night before I had stayed up all night. After school I went to the coffee bean with Jessica, Brayden, and Bailey. Like an idiot I’d ordered a americana frappecino “decaf” (which I thought meant no caffeine, it actually means you still got some caffeine in there bud, just a little less). I got a small, then a large. It was fun. Not much studying was done for the big APUSH test, but we at least finished the study guides. Brayden and I walked home together.
I don’t have the sticky notes with me right now, except for one that Megan gave me in Math the next day. It say’s THE LIGHTBULB OF LOVE SHINES FOR YOU.
I remember the majority of them though. I got a lot that said: You’re a very kind and intelligent person. You are the sweetest person I know. You’re too kind. Intriguing SAS. You seem like a genially good person. You’re smart. Ect.
All of this melted me a little.
Maybe it’s bad, but deep down I was disappointed that no one said: You’re beautiful. You’re gorgeous. You’re pretty.
Is that shallow?
I was reading Megan’s and they were mostly You’re so gorgeous! If beauty was intelligence then you won the lottery. You’re so beautiful. All of this is true. Megan undoubtedly is a beautiful, warm girl. She’s the kind of person that makes you feel happy just by being in the same room together.
I guess that’s why I felt a little down afterwards. I felt like UGLY was branded on my forehead.
What surprised me the most was the people who actually wrote me things. Like Hunter, who I’ve never spoken to. Collin, the most intelligent person in our class who can speak Russian and French fluently (self-taught) and is interested in the Greek and Latin alphabet. Iyana even left me one. She’s one of my bullies from 8th grade, and she wrote: Last year in bio we didn’t say one word to each other. Now we’re in this class and you’re personality shines brightly through your dancing! That kind of struck me. I thought she wouldn’t leave anything, or if she did it would be some backhand compliment like: You’re somewhat cute. I think what also hurt me a little bit was the people who didn’t say anything to me. Like Nick, we aren’t really friends but I’ve known him a long time. And Charlie Canela who I’ve known since second grade. Then again, does it really matter what a guy who’s constantly checking out his muscles twenty-four seven says about me?
No. I’m glad that what most people can say about me is that I’m kind. That’s all I try to do.
As of right now, I’m in Sedona. Mom stayed behind to watch the dog.Kind of relieved. How awkward would it have been, the four of us in seven years having Thanksgiving dinner together?
I’m Thankful just for being here, alive with my heart beating, feeling the incredible warmth from the fire.