Sunday, November 17, 2013

Blogvember Post Seventeen: Favorite Year of Elementary School

One thing about me is that I have a horrible, no good, very bad long-term memory. I honest to goodness can only remember a handful of specific moments from elementary school, let alone an entire year, or years. So I can't even tell you what my favorite year of elementary school was.

Most kids start kindergarten when they are already 5. I started when I was 4, then I turned 5 that October. The only way my parents could do this was to send me to a Lutheran school for kindergarten. They were then able to move me to the public school for 1st grade.

What I mostly remember is that life was generally amazing my entire elementary school career until we moved away from the teeny, tiny town we lived in, to a bigger one a few hours away. The town I lived in was so small it didn't even have a stop light in it. We lived outside of town, in the country, on a county highway. I semi-recently saw a piece of mail from that time in my life, and our street address was only "Route 1". No house number or anything.

We moved to a new city when I was in fourth grade. It just started dawning on me in the last few weeks that I was the same age that Iris is now. Moving was traumatic. I went to a new school half way through 4th grade, then we moved AGAIN half way through 5th grade because my family went from a rental house to a house my parents built. I spent half of a year at that school before moving on to middle school. We all know it's all down hill once you hit middle school. 

I definitely began having anxiety attacks when I was in younger than 4th grade, but it mostly presented itself at stomach aches. My mom always had to pick me up from school. I was miraculously better the second I got home and took a swill of "the pink stuff". I don't remember disliking much about school, though, so I'm not sure what the anxiety was about. 

Once I kept forgetting to have a form signed by my parents, it was something like a form from the teacher saying something negative about my school work. Or something. Anyways, I didn't want to bring it home. The teacher made me pin a note to the front of my shirt and wear it around school, it said something like "remind me to bring my note home and have my parents sign it". That was mortifying. I think I was in 2nd or 3rd grade. 

I had the best friend in the whole world through my early elementary grades. Her name was Sarah. Through the magic of Facebook I found her again a couple of years ago. She is just as hilarious as I remember, which is the coolest thing ever. 

Okay, this was a rambling post, but what do you expect for a blog post a day?

ETA: Shortly after writing this post, the most random, remarkable thing happened. Let me back-track a bit and start again at the time when I moved away from my first school in 5th grade. At the new school I attended for about a year, I met another Sarah, who I quickly became besties with. She was quirky and artistic, like me. We lost touch after a few more moves and new schools. Fortunately, I randomly discovered her on Facebook a while ago when I was going through a mutual friend's photos. We rarely, if ever, interact on FB, but it's always nice to see photos of her family and read about what's new with her. So, after I write this blog post, bringing up memories I haven't thought about in years, Sarah posts a "#tbt" (throwback thursday) photo of me on FB. It is the one below. I was saying goodbye to my 2nd school, moving on to my 3rd school. I was in 6th grade here, 11 years old.

I am almost 100% certain I wearing the jean jacket that my older brother painted the album cover for Bon Jovi's New Jersey record on the back of for me. I attended my first concert that year, and you guessed it, it was Bon Jovi's New Jersey tour. 

When I saw this photo and read her FB post I kept thinking I was making it up. How is it possible that this picture was posted by a girl I don't keep in touch with on the same night I sifted through old memories of this very time? The universe works in grand and mysterious ways. 

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