Pre-accident hindsight on school and family life.
I was fourteen years old when I started my freshman year, and like every other kid in that stale high school, I was just trying to play it cool to fit in. Fortunately for me, I have never been the best at “playing it cool”. So, while my peers seemed to be easily transitioning from awkward to a little less awkward, I remained as awkward as I had ever been. Spoiler alert, their transition was just as messy and uncomfortable as mine, but no one sees that common trend as it’s happening! Anyway, my friends and I were all in band class every morning, went to some kind of practice after school, and spent our weekends talking about the new kid. Actually, I can’t particularly remember what we would have been doing on the weekends, but I assume talking about the new kid couldn’t have been a far stretch from the truth. Speaking of not remembering exactly, I’ll pause the tale here to explain something that will occur often throughout my story: over the years I’ve lost track of specific details such as what we did on the weekends, what people might have said exactly, and dates, among other things that will come up as we go! The faded memories, however, won’t interrupt too much and rest assured, I’ll wait until I start a fiction novel to invent elaborate fillers. Now, resume play! A few of us had gotten our driver's license, some of us started to branch out to try new things, but for the most part, we ate lunch in the cafeteria while complaining about the lukewarm milk. In general, there was really nothing spectacularly special about my freshman year. I was a mediocre clarinet player who wore sweats almost every day. I told lame jokes that weren't funny to anyone outside my circle, and tried to bend the rules without getting into trouble but mostly failed. In the fall a few of us would walk to the gas station to get a fountain soda, and wear our pep band shirts to the football games. There was a few of us that joined an organization called Key Club, which meant we started to raise money for UNICEF, read the daily announcements, and things like that. I think that most of my friends reading will agree that one timeless tradition of freshman year that pretty much lasted through our high school career was going to Baylee’s house across the street to steal cheese sticks or fruit snacks! It seemed at the beginning of my freshman year, to me, that our family was similar to what it had always been. I was the spoiled little sister and my siblings were the cool older kids who had already started their adult lives. My sisters as well as their friends had started to have kids and I was always being called “Auntie Freddie”. Paul took me places I needed to be and we fought about who was to do the dishes. Dad was still working in the oil field as he has for as long as I can remember, and he even had got Paul hired onto his crew in the summer of 2011! We were all human, which included being a little broken, mad, and even a pinch crazy! Nonetheless, we loved each other. We, with the exception of my sisters who were lived out of town, ate dinner at the truck stop, watched Jay Leno on the television, and went skiing when dad was home. In hindsight, I’d say life was rather normal if I believed in normal that is.