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I thought that it would be the greatest day of my life. It was going to be the first day of 13 magical years. I set my alarm two hours early just so I could lay in my brand new “big girl bed” to think how great my day was going to be. As the two hours passed I got more and more anxious. I crept down the dark, empty hallway at 6:00 in the morning, in pursuit of someone I could share my excitement with. I was greeted with an empty kitchen filled with dirty pots and pans with the stains of burnt pasta on them from last night. My dissapointed self went back up the creaking stairs with the lightly stained carpet.

It felt like an eternity, but it was finally time for me to get ready to go to school. I threw on the outfit I carefully selected out of my messy closet last night, which was mostly comprised of pink. I rush back down the same stairs I walked up two hours earlier. My first day breakfast selection was Froot Loops, It had been for the past four years. The sweetness of the wonderful cereal was like crunchy heaven. I pack my bag and walk into the navy blue Subaru Forester that seemed like a limo at the time. On the way to school, I kept looking out the window with the bright rays of the sun nearly blinding me thinking that this was going to be the same thing I got to see on my way to school for the next six years. It was the beginning of a new time for me.

The school was just like what I envisioned it to be. I walk up to a tall and skinny man with what I thought was a nice tie at the time, and my dad introduces me.

“Hello Mr Kappel, this is my daughter Harper.” He says in the most enthusiastic voice he possibly can. The man then turns to me and introduces himself as Mr Kappel. I say,

“Hello” in a very shy voice. Mr Kappel and my dad then go on and talk about the school for a few minutes while I count the cars that come into the small parking lot. Then, after all the talking, I finally say the most fake “goodbye” I had ever done in my life to my dad. I don’t know exactly why I did it. Looking back on it, it was one of the worst things I have ever done. I was going into a new part of my life where I would be less dependent on my parents, and my dad wants to make sure that I know that he loves me, and all I give him is rudeness. I still hate myself for it.

After watching my dad drive out of the small parking lot in the Subaru Forester, I walk into the big and intimidating classroom. I was nervous. All of the kids were talking to each other and I didn’t know what to do. I sat at the desk in the back corner and looked at the cheesy posters on the walls. I didn’t know what most of them said since I wasn’t that good at reading. The last student arrived 10 and 41 seconds late according to my Dragon Fruit Swatch. Mr Kappel then walked in and closed the door with a thud. He announced to the class that we would be sharing our names and one thing that we like. We sat around the big rug with all sorts of animals on it that I would come to know very well, and went around the circle. Finally they got to me. I said in a shy, quiet voice that my name was Harper and that I liked ice cream (which had been said by about half the class). Unfortunately, my perfect day was about to come to a halt. A slightly overweight boy who had introduced himself as Solomon shouted in front of the whole class,

“That’s a stupid name!”. They all erupted in laughter. They were all looking and laughing at me. Even Mr Kappel chuckled a little. He didn’t do anything about it, all he did was try to settle the class down. It was the first time someone had ever said something mean to me. I returned to my seat in the corner on the verge of tears. I was heartbroken that my perfect day was ruined. Mr Kappel started showing us where everything was in the classroom, but I didn’t listen. I was too worried about getting embarrassed again, and couldn’t focus. The chair felt hard on my back as I laid my head on the hard wooden desk. I missed my dad, and I missed mom. I still remember the day one year ago at the hospital when the doctor told me she was wasn’t going to make it. She got in an accident driving home from work late one night. I missed everything about her. I missed the way she tucked me in, how she read me One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish every night. I miss when we got ice cream on the corner every Monday and we would both get strawberry flavored. At least I still have dad I thought. All I wanted was to have her back. Also, I never want to go back to this place ever again.

It was time for lunch. My dad packed me peanut butter and jelly. He thought I liked it but I didn’t have the guts to tell him that I had got tired of it like 2 years ago. I tolerated it. I sat by myself on the cold hard floor in the corner. I saw the no good nasty Solomon talking with all his friends while I ate the crusts of my peanut butter and jelly. I was still hungry but I didn’t feel like eating. Mr Kappel escorted us back into the classroom in a single file line. I felt like a prisoner. When we got back to the classroom, I felt a single tear roll down my plump cheek. It felt like a waterfall rushing down smooth rocks. I only had to survive another two hours I thought to myself. Thinking about two hours seemed like an eternity only because just earlier that morning I had been in my big girl bed for two hours thinking how much of a wonderful day it was going to be. I was wrong. The rest of the day was as bad as the first part. The only thing I could think about was my mom and my name.

My dad picked me up in the same navy blue Subaru Forester he drove me here in. I was silent on the drive home, after figuring out that words can be a bad thing. I was looking out the window and thinking, this is what I had to see on the way back home for the next six years. The moment I got home I raced up the creaking stairs and immediately threw myself onto my bed. Above me on the wall was the name Harper in bold, pink letters. The same name that I got made fun of for. The rivers of tears started rolling down my face. My dad must have heard me crying because I heard a knock on the door and footsteps walking into my room. My dad asked, “What’s wrong sweetie?” I screamed, “I hate school. I hate the kids, I hate the teachers, I hate everything about it!” My dad was obviously shocked, and I could tell that he had been thinking about me all day at work. I explained to him that somebody made fun of my name, and how Mr Kappel didn’t do anything about it. I told him all about my day, even explaining to him that I didn’t like peanut butter and jelly. I sat in the warm room with him neither of us saying a word. I was scared. I was scared of going to school. But it didn’t matter, because we went to the ice cream store on the corner and both got strawberry flavor. My dad comforted me in a way my mom couldn’t. He could never replace my mom but I knew that he was always there for me.


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