Yesterday I came close to tears during Health class. A former meth addict came in and spoke to us. Y'know, it's one thing to see pictures of addicts on billboards or hear horror stories from anti-drug campaigns...it's another thing entirely to see an addict in person, to listen to their story without the flashy badges and the cliched "Just Say No" slogans. I mean, when we have assemblies and listen to cops and other nobodies rant about the dangers of drugs, it's so...impersonal. But when you see the years of suffering on that weathered face, and you hear that softened voice, it has a powerful effect.
This woman who spoke to us started drinking heavily at the age of 13, got pregnant at 16, dropped out of high school at 17, and sacrificed her dreams of becoming a nurse for that daily high. She didn't want to get out of bed each morning. She wanted to die. She was arrested four times. After the fourth time she finally got help and she's been clean for five years. She volunteered to come to our school; she wasn't forced by any judge or cop. She wanted to help us. She just threw herself out there, let us see her shame and agony. Even the bitchiest and rudest douchefucks managed to shut the hell up and listen without making any snide remarks.
So that was very eye-opening.
I found out why my mom's been uber stressed lately. Her job is utter shit, that's why. Basically she's been forced to correct the mistakes of many trainees, and she corrects the same mistakes day after day, and she can't get any of her own work done, and it's pissing her off. She has to sacrifice her progress to fix everybody else's shitty work. So I'd be pissed too. She broke down and cried during dinner the other day. She has this belief that a mother should never break down in front of her kids, so that made her feel even more shitty.
I realized today that Amber, my former best friend whom I haven't spoken to in over a month, still has my copy of Let Me In, which is one of my favorite books ever. So now I have to text her and awkwardly ask for it back. Knowing her, she probably lost it or gave it to someone who lost it. Or maybe she'll just refuse to give it back to be a little bitch. Or maybe we'll meet in person so she can return it to me and it'll be...well, awkward. Damn it.
I still feel a pang of guilt every now and then, because Amber pushed Brittany to text me that one lovely night and we've gotten much closer because of that. That was the only big favor she ever really did for me.
The high school talent show is this weekend. I think Brittany, who plays clarinet for the band, is gonna be in it. Tickets sell out all the time. Everybody in town goes to see it. Hopefully I can go. I missed it last year because my mom refused to take me and I'm certainly not going to go by myself and be all awkward. I've heard about how awesome all the acts are.
The more I hear about Brittany's boyfriend, the more I think she deserves better. She's just like me: she loves imagination and daydreaming and creativity. Her boyfriend loves science and math and strict, unwavering facts. Which is fine, but how many wonderful conversations can you have with a person who has zero imagination? I bet he shoots down all of her daydreams and ideas.
God damn it Brittany, we would be an amazing couple! We could lay outside and gaze up at the stars and share our cooky what ifs and our crazy ideas. I'm still really psyched about doing a one-on-one interview with her for the paper. It's supposed to be really in depth.