That Time I Was the New Girl…Again

It’s time for another Jodi Meadows prompt! Here is this one:

Write a blog post about a time you were new to something, or somewhere, and how you dealt with it.

I tried to do that, but I think this one is a bit more rambling than she had wanted.

My family has moved around a lot, maybe not as much as some people, but enough to say that I went to two elementary schools, two middle schools, and two high schools. Then when I graduated I went to college in one town and then moved with my family again 1.5 hours away and went to school there too. While every move is hard for any kid and especially a shy kid, the move during high school was by far the hardest for me.
I was born and raised in Michigan and never thought that we would be moving out of it. All of my friends and family lived there and that’s just where life was for all of us. Then the auto industry tanked and a lot of people lost their jobs. My dad’s company went on strike for a long time in 2008 before offering buyouts to their employees. Knowing that the company was going down (and it was. It’s now officially out of commission) my parents made the decision to take it. After that a lot of things happened. We had been blessed with a beautiful home in a really nice neighborhood going to a great school that was only 10 years old (at the time) and we had to leave it.
There was a lot of fluttering around about what it was that we were going to be doing. First we thought we were going to move to Texas and then to Virginia. Finally my dad was able to get a job in Knoxville, Tennessee. So, halfway through my senior year of high school we moved from Michigan to Tennessee.
When we left Michigan it was the middle of winter with tons of snow on the ground and the obvious need for a winter jacket.

Moving from Michigan

When we got to Tennessee there was no snow to be seen and it was warm enough so that we only had to wear hoodies. This was a change I didn’t mind. We settled into a rental house that was much different than the one we had come from and about 1/3 of the size and I now had to share a room with my older sister like we had before we moved to our last house.

Brother and I walking towards our new house in Tennessee

It was a tough time for everyone in our family. My older sister couldn’t join us for another few weeks because she was finishing school in Michigan for the semester. Once she got down though it was my family trying to figure out how to take the circumstances that had been thrown at us and start a new life.
It was really lonely. When we lived in Michigan we spent a lot of time at our grandmother’s house and saw my cousins all the time. Now we had no one. In Michigan I had friends that I could call up and hang out with non-stop. In Tennessee I had absolutely no one save for the other four people that lived in my house. Then school started.
The first day was rough for lack of a better term. The entire school system in Tennessee was completely different from the one in Michigan. Instead of having six hours we had four blocks. I don’t think I ever completely adjusted to that. I went to a really old school that reminded me of a dungeon and that I hated. Some of my classes were in trailers because there wasn’t enough room in the school. The people there had known each other since they were babies and everyone knew everyone else. My teachers were very welcoming though. My guidance officer had put a note at the top of my schedule that told them where I was from and so everyone was very accommodating. Then I had lunch. This was the first time in my entire school career where I knew absolutely no one in my lunch period or where the other kids in my class hadn’t offered to let me sit with them. So I sat alone. It was one of the loneliest hours of my life.
The next morning came full on with a complete breakdown on my part that led my father to come up to the school and have a talk with my guidance officer who assured us that if I needed to come see her at any time during the day I could and that if I wanted to eat lunch in the office lobby (there were several tables and chairs) that I could. So I sucked it up and went back in for round two. This time though I knew I had to change something. So instead of sitting quietly in my third block class (lunch was in the middle of this class) I walked in and introduced myself to the girl that sat behind me. I asked if I could eat lunch with her and she said yes! So now I had people to sit lunch with and not be alone. I was never quite good friends with any of them, but I will always be eternally grateful because they sheltered me and gave me a place to feel safe and welcome during lunch. (Instead of all alone) The second day I also decided to wear a Twilight shirt. The first movie had just come out a few months prior and I was all over it. There was a girl in my fourth block class who turned around and said something that I will never forget, “How many of those you got?” I laugh about it so much now but our friendship began with a Twilight shirt. Fourth block and that friend became the reason why I was able to go to school every day. I am no longer close with that friend, but she was definitely the reason why I was able to get through that school. At the start of every day I knew that if I could just make it to fourth block I would get to have fun with her and not feel like the outcast I felt like everywhere else.
Then I moved again, but that story is for another time.