The Damaging Effects of FAS and PPD in the Womb and What Society Needs to Do About It

The two conditions that I chose to elaborate on for Child Development in college were fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and postpartum depression (PPD). PPD occurs when a new mother experiences extreme sadness, feeling helpless, like they are not a good enough mother, everything regarding the care of a baby seems too much, feelings of guilt, and unworthiness are present 2 to 3 months after a woman has a baby. FAS is a bunch of birth defects that can be caused by a woman consuming alcohol while pregnant.

I chose these two because I feel as if people do not take these as seriously as they should especially with postpartum depression and FAS is often treated too late. It is our job as a society to make sure that these conditions are not only prevented but are properly diagnosed and the proper steps are taken to help the individual who is suffering. When PPD is present a lot of the time it’s difficult to be diagnosed because of baby blues, which is a very mild form of postpartum depression and usually goes away with time. This causes doctors to dismiss the symptoms of postpartum depression and the woman does not receive the proper treatment.

We need to start advocating for the actual seriousness of this problem. When birth hormones decrease, 8-15 percent of women experience the symptom of PPD. The new mother could even experience thoughts of suicide, drug abuse, harming her baby, or neglecting her baby. This could have a major impact on the development of a child. If postpartum depression goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed that child could end up harmed, neglected, emotionally scarred, or even worse.

FAS can cause horrible defects like abnormal facial characteristics, and stunted growth both physically and mentally. I think it’s extremely important to address this especially because we want to assume that this is a mother’s choice and won’t acknowledge that alcoholism is a disease whether the person is pregnant or not. We should be treating it as a disease. We need to be giving women better resources to find help and seek treatment and we need to have less bias in medicine, so that when these things are reported they get taken seriously and not when it’s too late

Depression is Real

Many of you know me as a bubbly, happy person. However, these past few months have been extremely difficult for me. I have been severely depressed …

Depression is Real

Who is Alan Whitcomb Now?

Walden University

 Mock Case Study for Psychology 101

Who is Allen Whitcomb Now?

Allen Whitcomb is 47-year-old man, who is married with two children is college. For the most part he has been healthy his whole life until recently he got in a bad car accident and lost his leg due to texting while driving. He claims that the car that hit him was further away and slower than it was, and he is also color blind. Since the accident he has been experiencing pain for which he takes over the counter medications and has gained 20 pounds and has trouble sleeping. He has also reported that when he hears the song that was playing during the accident his heart rate increases. His wife reports that he seeks a quiet and calm environment and is quite mean to her after he watches violent television, she describes him as quiet, tense, anxious, unfriendly, and on edge. In regard to work he has been having attendance problems, either being late or not showing up at all. His manager reports he has problems with memory and processing the new filing system that has been put in place at his job. He also seems to forget information after a few moments.

Allen’s reports can be attributed to a few topics and studies in psychology, including the central core of the brain and how behavior is affected by damage to the limbic system, sensation, association areas of the cortex, which includes memory, learning, and emotion and I will talk about these individually and discover who Allen Whitcomb is now with the information I have learned about the brain

Brain and Behavior

            When talking about the brain and how it relates to Allen’s behavior I want to talk about the central core of the brain and the main structures as most of them pertain to Allen. Starting with the medulla, which is what controls heart rate and this is the part of the brain that causes Allen’s elevated heart rate every time he hears the song that was playing during his accident. More specifically the hypothalamus because it triggers a survival response, otherwise known as “fight or flight” response. Feldman, R. (2020). This response is activated when he hears that song or similar sounding song because his body associates this with survival. Feldman, R. (2020).

            The next structure is the forebrain, and located in the forebrain is reticular formation, which determines whether or not a specific action or reaction is necessary. Feldman, R. (2020). With the information that I have, I can determine that there is damage to the forebrain that causes Allen to react when a reaction is not necessarily called for in a given situation. But the reticular formation also controls sleep and sleep patterns, Feldman, R. (2020), so this could be the reason that Allen has trouble sleeping, since he claims his sleep-wake cycle has been disrupted.

           

Sensation and Perception

            Sensation as it relates to Allen has everything to do with the amount of pain that he has had since his accident. Pain could be a reaction to a few different things, one being perceptual, meaning it could be a reaction to how he feels about his accident or even a thought. Feldman, R. (2020). In Allen’s case, he attributes his poor work ethic to pain while his therapist suggests it is most likely anxiety. Both could potentially be factors. Something extremely small in the grand scheme of all of Allen’s issues could cause anxiety. Feldman, R. (2020).

            Allen also claims that he is depressed and in response his therapist has suggested that he smile more. This specific request might sound unnecessary, but it does have a purpose. It is a cognitive treatment that some psychologists have been known to use and it involves reconstructing the way he may think. If he swaps his negative thoughts for positive ones, that sense of control, no matter how big or small, that does have the potential to decrease the pain he has. Feldman, R. (2020).

            Allen is also an amputee, which could explain his discomfort in the form of phantom limb pain, which can be offset through a therapy called mirror pain therapy. Feldman, R. (2020). In mirror pain therapy, mirrors are used to make it look like both limbs are intact, Feldman, R. (2020), for Allen it is his legs. This is supposed to make the brain stop sending messages that are perceived as pain to the leg that is no longer there Feldman, R. (2020). This could help Allen stop having pain and get back to work if employed properly and by the correct psychologist.

Learning and Memory

            The limbic system is actually involved with thinking and memory as well as emotions and aggression. Feldman, R. (2020). Allen has substantial damage to this part of his brain, more so, than any of the others. His boss has reported that Allen is having trouble learning the new filing system at work and that he frequently forgets things after a couple of minutes. This is caused by damage to the hippocampus, which renders him unable to remember recent events, while leaving the memories prior to the accident intact. Feldman, R. (2020). More specifically, damage to the hippocampus is especially sensitive to tasks where objects need to be linked together and placed in specific locations. Rolls ET. (2018). This could be the cause of Allen getting confused by the new filing system that has been implemented at his job, seeing as significant damage has been done to the hippocampus.

            Allen reports that his problems at work are because of pain, however, his therapist disagrees, she believes his problems at work are the cause of anxiety. This anxiety is why he now feels that he will not be good enough at work, which directly translates to why he does better work with others than he does on his own. He lacks the confidence in himself to be able to live up to the standards his job expects of him.

He has reported feeling judgement since the accident and has claimed that people look at him differently. His boss reports that he is often late or calls in sick, anxiety about feeling both judgement from others and the anxiety that he may not be able to perform well is most likely the cause of his attendance problems. Not to mention he works the night shift, and that may be why he has problems sleeping.

Motivation and Emotion

            The motivation to eat is seen as a primary drive and is controlled by the hypothalamus which regulates food intake. Feldman, R. (2020). This relates to Allen because he has gained 20 pounds since his accident which would imply that there has been some damage to this area of the brain. The hypothalamus affects the weight set point, the specific measure of weight that the body attempts to maintain, either telling the body to eat more or less to manage this weight set point. Feldman, R. (2020). Certain drugs, such as the over the counter medications that Allen takes for pain, can also be the cause of his weight gain, they can distort the weight set point, causing the hypothalamus to tell the body to increase the amount of food that is eaten. Feldman, R. (2020).  

            His manager has reported that he is currently working with Allen to resolve his attendance issues by setting attendance goals with him, Allen is working toward earning lunch for his entire team based on timely attendance. This is an example of a positive reinforcer, Feldman R. (2020).  Something is being added or given as a reward, the lunch for his team, to encourage or increase a certain behavior, timely attendance, Feldman, R. (2020). This reward should motivate Allen to be on time, and maybe increase the judgement he feels from co-workers as well.

            The amygdala, which is located in the temporal lobe of the brain, is crucial to the expression of emotions. Feldman, R. (2020). The amygdala supplies a connection to the perception of a cause of an emotion and the recollection of that cause at a later time. Feldman, R. (2020). This sequence of events applies to Allen’s accident, because he doesn’t remember the accident but remembers the song that was playing, causing him to associate that song with the accident. Because of damage to amygdala, this display of classical conditioning could also be the cause of Allen’s elevated heart rate when hearing the song, it causes him to feel stress and fear in anticipation of the accident. This could also be a symptom of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which is reliving the traumatic experience, in this case his accident, either in the form of a vivid flashback or a dream, Feldman R. (2020). This flashback can be caused by something that seems irrelevant, like the song playing during the accident, but it elicits a very strong reaction in the person who is suffers from the disease. Feldman R. (2020).

Development

            Development that is impaired or stunted in childhood can affect adulthood, Feldman, R. (2020). Nature and nurture is a common debate among developmental psychologists, because some biological factors like genetics and maturation have an effect on how people may develop later on in adulthood, while some factors that affect development in adulthood are the cause of the environment, such as how well the family functions and what the family’s SES (socioeconomic status) is. Feldman, R. (2020). For Allen, his mother always said he was not good enough. This is most likely the cause of Allen’s anxiety, as he does not want to fail and lacks confidence to even try for fear of failure. His therapist also has pointed this out to Allen as a cause of his anxiety, especially when it involves work.

            His wife has stated that Allen does not have many close friends. This can affect development in that people normally have a need for affiliation, this just means that people have a desire to make friends and keep them. Feldman, R. (2020). People who withdraw themselves from friends or do not have any, as in Allen’s case, have the potential to become depressed and experience sadness. Feldman, R. (2020). Allen has reported to his therapist that he is experiencing feelings of sadness and fatigue, which are two symptoms of depression as well. Feldman, R. (2020).

Personality

            Allen’s personality has been affected in a few ways. His wife has described him as quiet, tense, anxious and unfriendly. These are part of the neuroticism dimension in Hans Eysenck’s theory of traits. Feldman, R. (2020). Eysenck referred to the neuroticism dimension as being able to decide how stable a person’s emotions are, which in turn, allowed Eysenck to research people across all of the dimensions and gain the ability to foresee how they may behave. Feldman. R, (2020). Allen also displays low self-esteem in the work environment, low self-esteem is also a trait in the neuroticism dimension as described by Eysenck. Feldman, R. (2020).

            Allen’s wife has also reported that he watches television a lot since the accident, and after he watches violent television shows he treats her unkindly, but he seems to feel bad and is trying to stop that. This aggression, is directly correlated with the violence he sees on TV, psychologists believe that the frequency and the amount of time spent watching violent television makes them more likely to act aggressively than they normally would if they did not engage in watching violent television. Feldman, R. (2020).

Social Behavior

            Allen’s social behavior has been largely affected due to his injury, it has caused people to look at him differently and to judge his abilities based only on his disability. Allen’s attitude toward certain situations and people have also been affected. Allen thinks that all of his managers at work are unfair and overly directive. Attitudes have the potential to change our behavior toward a person or a belief, Feldman, R. (2020), in Allen’s case his attitude about his managers affects his motivation at work and his willingness to perform well. Allen has also developed an impression formation about his managers, which is how one categorizes the facts he knows about an individual, his managers, to form a generalization or impression of that individual, they are overly directive and unfair. Feldman, R. (2020). Allen has developed a schema, or an expectation about how these managers act, so that he can anticipate how he will later interact with them. Feldman, R. (2020).

Allen is especially susceptible to stereotype vulnerability, in which he is aware of how other people view disabled people. Feldman, R. (2020). Allen is directly connected to this because of the judgement he faces at work and because of his mother always saying that he is not good enough. As a result of his co-workers judging him, coupled with his mothers belief that he is not good enough, he has come to accept this belief, and actually think that they are not good enough. Since he has accepted this, he fears that he will confirm his mother’s belief, and will fail or will not even try because he is under the impression that he is not good enough and won’t be good enough regardless of the efforts he puts in. Feldman, R. (2020).

Allen may also be a victim of poor coping skills when it directly involves stress, the more times we try to beat stress could cause psychological issues that cause issues in our health to arise. Feldman, R. (2020). Allen has chosen to deal with his stress by watching television and overeating, also known as avoidant coping, where one uses a more direct path in order to cope, which has causes unhealthy habits that normally are out of character for them, Feldman, R. (2020), the weight gain and most likely the fatigue he feels is a result of his avoidant coping. The more he is exposed to stress, the more his immune system deteriorates, and causes a decrease in the ability to fight off infections or diseases. Feldman, R. (2020).

Allen could also be in the third stage of general adaptation syndrome, which is exhaustion, as is described by Hans Selye a stress theorist, who studied the consequences of long-term stress and their effects on the body. Feldman, R. (2020). During this final stage the person’s fight to overcome the cause of the stress decreases to the point where physical damage and psychological damage can start to be seen. Feldman, R. (2020). This could be the cause of Allen’s lack of focus at work and his irritability which causes him to lash out at his wife, unintentionally. His wife has suggested that Allen remain as active as possible, which is one thing that can be used to offset the damages that can cause stress, and promote healthier habits and coping mechanisms. Feldman, R. (2020).

Conclusion

Allen has a lot of hard work ahead of him in order to fix and cope with some of the damage that has been inflicted on him because of his car accident. He suffers from depression and anxiety that severely hinders his attendance at work, a lack of self-confidence and motivation that affects his willingness to work and work hard while ignoring the preconceived notions that his co-workers have toward him. Poor coping skills, have caused his weight gain and excessive amounts of television has made him aggressive toward his wife. He has significant damage to some of the systems in the brain, most notably the limbic system, association areas of the brain, and the hippocampus, which has caused problems with memory and learning new information related to new systems at work. Damage to the amygdala is responsible for expression of emotion, and therefore has caused his aggression. His therapist has suggested cognitive restructuring and biofeedback techniques, like mirror therapy could be applied to Allen for pain management of the amputated leg. The aggression from damage to the amygdala may imply that serious personality changes are present and it is too soon to tell if he will ever be able to restore the damage done to it. In short, proper nutrition, intensive therapy, exercise, and the proper dosage of medications are the only ways that any of this damage can start to repair and it may only repair some of it. Only time will tell what is in store for Allen Whitcomb, but we all have gained a little bit more of an understanding of who Allen Whitcomb is now as a person since his unfortunate accident.

References

Feldman, R. (2020). Psychology and Your Life with P.O.W.E.R. Learning (4th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education. Rolls ET; Oxford Centre for Computational Neuroscience, Oxford, England. (2018). Cell and Tissue Research [Cell Tissue Res] 2018 Sep; Vol. 373 (3), pp. 577-604. Berlin, New York, Springer-Verlag

Poem: Soul Love

Lost in the love that I cannot touch. My heart longs for it so much. My eyes cry for the beauty in the sky.   That which can be seen But is so out of…

Poem: Soul Love

Beliefs

I’m going to list three of my core beliefs and why they matter to me. Perhaps someone will relate to them or agree with me on some points.

Everyone should have the right to bodily autonomy.

Everyone deserves the right to govern their own bodies and make decisions for themselves. Everyone. Whether you identify as male, female, asexual, LGBTQ+ ect, it does not matter. The abortion issue frequently comes up when this is being discussed and while I have been rather hesitant only sharing a few of my viewpoints, I aim to address those in full, as I am in no way fearful of potential reprecussions.

I’m well-versed on the subject of abortion, I’m in the middle of writing a book on adoption and the issues within the system and unfortunately adoption goes hand-in-hand with abortion and affects nearly every sector of Child Protective Services and all of the programs that are designed to aid women and children. For starters, let’s stop assuming (well men need to stop assuming really) that women are irresponsible and should be held accountable for “spreading their legs,” when in reality most women who receive an abortion never thought in a million years that they would find themselves having to make such a heartbreaking decision.

Second, I’ll add some facts on how birth control was conceived (no pun intended). Birth control was formed by the Catholic church originally, and was designed to give women their periods and prevent the influx of children into the system that was occurring at the time. However, in order to keep he integrity of the church it had to be “natural,” so it was engineered to give women mencies every month, not only to assure that they couldn’t get pregnant while on the pill, but also to alert women that they were not pregnant. This leads me into why some women forgo the option to even take birth control.

When an egg is released, it punctures and leaves a hole in the uterine wall. This cell division has the potential to cause cauncer because that’s what cancer is on the molecular level. Cancer is caused when the cell divides. Women who are on birth control are more likely to develop all sorts of different kinds of cancer depending on the woman’s individual body type. Not to mention that birth control comes with some wicked side effects which is the reason a lot of women rely on the pull-out method or Plan B. Birth control methods like Mirana that requires your doctor to insert it, those are dangerous. They can be stuck into the uterine wall and can cause ectopic pregnancies (where the egg is fertilized and begins to grow outside of the uterus, which can cause hemorrhaging, and that can lead to death if not treated immediately).

New research has surfaced and doctors are claiming that more and more women are having these ectopic pregnancies and that’s very dangerous for those that are in states where abortion access is limited or banned entirely. This is why its extremely important that abortion access be legal and safe. Sexual promiscuity is NOT an excuse for taking away a woman’s right to choose. It shouldn’t matter what city council thinks (as is the case in Mason, Ohio), it shouldn’t matter what Sally in goddamn Nebraska thinks, and then men in these women’s lives should have no say either. That last point seems harsh, but women who are in happy and healthy relationships often confer with their partners anyways. The women who don’t are usually victims of rape or are in environments that they don’t feel comfortable raising children in. For all those conservatives that believe men should have a say when they are in a committed relationships, they already do. It’s rare circumstances that the mans opinion is not taken into consideration.

Comprehensive sexual education in schools.

Another one of my core beliefs, especially since I have a 3-year-old daughter, is fighting for comprehensive sexual education in school. No. I do NOT mean abstinence-based sexual eduation, that’s a load of bullshit. I want young men to be educated on a woman’s anatomy, taught about what constitutes as consent (including how to aquire it), and to be knowledgeable about pregnancy and what it does to women’s bodies along with the effects of menstruation.

Most men I encounter hardly know anything about these subjects. I have heard many a man proclaim that you cannot “rape your wife,” which is an absolutely absurd thing to say and is jarring to hear as a woman. I will tell my husband some of the experiences I have had as a young woman trying to navigate sex, love, and relationships and he looks at me as if I have multiple heads. He is the exception, not the rule. My husband isn’t a pig. It brings me great relief, however it concerns me because he believes that because he would never act like that, most other men will also not behave that way; I know better. I feel as if I am reminding him constantly that our daughter will eventually be a young woman, and if we don’t educate our young men now, I fear my daughter will also have these same awful experiences.

Comprehensive sexual education in schools will alleviate a lot of issues in our current society. If we taught every child equally whether they are young men or women we would all benefit greatly. I’ll use the menonites as an example of this because it’s one of the few societies where it’s an evident and palpable issue. Menonites aren’t taught about sex hardly at all, let alone the consequences of having unprotected sex. When young women decide that they no longer wish to be Menonite, they often find themselves in less than savory situations. Drug use and pregnancies out of wedlock being the most common. The reference I am using for this is a personal account from the television show Breaking Amish. You can argue the legitimacy of this all day but I also have background knowledge as I live in Ohio and my Aunt hires the Amish to do upgrades and maintenence on her farm home in Pennsylvania. Both PA and OH are areas that are largely inhabited by the Amish, hell the spices I use in the food I cook, are from the Amish haha. Abstinence-only programs have been proven time and time again to be ineffective against stopping premature sexual encounters. Second question, who REALLY wants to talk to their own kids about sex?

The power of positive thinking

My final core belief is to stay positive. The saying, “fake it until you make it” has some science behind it. It’s not the end all be all of solutions, no. You still have to put in the work to break the habits of rumination that you’ve conditioned yourself into. However, there are studies that show if you think positiveely enough, you will attract positivity to you. For example, have you ever worried about something happening (regardless of it being good or bad) so much it consumes your every thought, and then (much to your dismay) it happens? That’s the power your perception holds. Look at the things that happen to you as an opportunity to grow and learn and you wll be much better for it, and attract the things you desire in your life.

I’m retisent to comment on The Secret and the law of attraction because people take it far too literally. There is some merit to it, but to claim that it has the potential to change your life overnight is a massive lie. The effects of your positivity may take a long time to manifest themselves in reality, but give it effort and enough time and watch your life change for the better, approach any problem as if it were a new opportunity, a chance to learn, or engagee in something new. That’s the power of positivity.

Why do you blog?

I believe I have answered this in some forma already, however I think I have, not only reflected upon, but refined my snswer into something that is actually plausible and isn’t a complete shit show.

I blog because I need an outlet? Like, I need to have somewhere to go that isn’t exactly public but isn’t exactly a secret. It’s my proverbial ‘reading nook,’ you know, that place where you go to escape and read a good book. It’s usually somewhere small and confined (if you aren’t clausterphobic), that only you know about.

That’s what this is for me. This apartment is small and my ideas are big and my time is short.

I have much to give and I may have realized a bit too late. Or maybe I realized that I’m not as masochistic as I’d like to think. I’m not sure, but I know there is talent and a skill that has the potential to be valuable to everyone.

As bad as this is going to sound, being adopted has allowed me a strange disconnection to people around me. Not in that I don’t connect with them or love them, not at all. It’s just that, I have the ability to override my impulsive emotional grudges (those injustices that you cannot seem to forgive or let go of), and explain their actions or behaviors. I can take their lived experiences and live them right alongside them and understand the reasons for their choices. I think I have always had this ability and it’s become invaluable to me over the past few years, as I’ve had to employ an innumerable amount of different world-views and perceptions of a vast array of people.

But people are also foreign to me, it often feels like I’m a zoo animal or maybe, I am the person walking through the zoo. Actually, you know what it feels like, I just came to the conclusion.

It feels like Lindsey Lohan (a.k.a. Cady) walking into the mall (after the iconic, “get in bitch, we’re going shopping,” line) for the first time and describing the center of it as being a “watering hole.” Gosh do you remember how completely innocent Lohan’s character felt? Analyzing the behaviors and habits of everyone around her, and looking at them in complete shock and awe at them.

That’s why I blog, those feelings, those moments, and the emotions that arise in me upon their mention…..those things cannot be openly shared here, unfortunately. It can be stifling, yes. If you want to know the actual life I lead, read the book, “The Crane Wife,” that is what I am.

I am The Crane Wife and I am here to tell my story to all who will listen.

Silent Sunday – Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church

My third great grandfather attended this church when he moved his family to Ohio in 1849 after he was emancipated in his father’s/owner’s will. I …

Silent Sunday – Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church

Speech Class…

Interview someone — a friend, another blogger, your mother, the mailman — and write a post based on their responses.

I never answer these prompts directly and in this case, it’s not for me. However, I’ll describe to you a time in my freshman year of high school, a mandatory speech class, and a teacher named Ms. Green who was either just a fucking prude or enjoyed making her students’ lives more miserable than they were prior.

Ms. Green (and she INSISTED on the “Ms.” to adult aquatic fit levels) had a dark complexion, but darker than your average person black person (certainly darker than me). She almost looked Egyptian because her daily go-to in terms of makeup, was dark black liquid eyeliner, and she painted it on thick and catlike, making her eyes seem to narrow when she looked at you. She always wore plain colors but her back and pencil skirts were always incredibly straight and neat. She was pretty much Dolores Ubridge but black.

If you don’t believe this description, I completely understand, like, 100%; but she made us write and MLA paper (fine no big deal, totally normal for a Freshman class) but it specifically had to be ONE page, so many words, and if it was even a page more? Upon collection, she would see a stapled paper, rip it off, throw it in the trash can, after she was done grading it/handing it back to you (days later) your paper would have some critiques on it.

Those of us who went over the one page limit had margins that read things like:

“Hmmmm this doesn’t seem finished?” Or “what happened? Did you lose your train of thought?”

It was my last period of the day and I honestly couldn’t WAIT for that bell to ring. The class was tortuous for me. Also she did this one really annoying thing where if anyone forgot their glasses she would ask them, “*insert name here* where are your spectacles today? Can you see the board without them?” If you corrected her by saying, “glasses” (because that’s what normal fucking people call them, not looney toons handed a teaching degree), she would lose her mind and go back and forth with you over using the word spectacles.

Anyways, one of my last assignments that I had to stand up in front of the room for though? That was my worst nightmare. In hindsight, I could do it now easily with no issues, but at the time? Oh absolutely not, I had no friends there, I was being bullied, sexually harassed, assaulted, and fetishized at that school. The LAST thing I wanted was to get up in front of a class of 18 out of my 19 tormentors and give an interview to one of them.

I don’t remember who I interviewed EXACTLY, but I know it was a boy that sat next to me and was kind of “okay” and by okay I mean he didn’t partake in the bullying campaign but certainly didn’t do anything to stop it, if that makes sense. I was not the writer I am today and I had no questions to ask this person nor did I want to know who this person was. Now I would have killed for the opportunity, but whatever.

I had been dreading it all week, I had no preparation, and I’m pretty sure my questions went like this:

  1. What is your favorite color and why?
  2. Do you have any household pets like dogs or cats or even exotic animals?
  3. What kind of video games (if any) do you enjoy playing?
  4. How old are you and what year were you born?
  5. What is your favorite subject?

If you can’t tell by those questions, it was ROUGH. The crowd was NOT diggin me, had I been a comedian? Booed off the stage almost immediately. When she called my name to come up and sit in those two awkward school chairs, you know the ones that are usually tan, have graffiti carved into them or sharpie, and one leg is always wobbly for whatever reason? Yes those. If that class was my prison, those were the prison benches in my mind.

Luckily most of the class wasn’t paying attention, they were far more concerned with looking at the clock as the beads of sweat that I was trying to conceal slowly crept down my face. I could feel my cheeks become hot and red (quite rare for a black person we usually turn some variation of purple), and I just wanted it to be over.

My lovely partner had to of felt the same way because his answers gave me absolutely nothing to work with at all. If they were ‘yes or no‘ questions he would answer as such, if you tried to squeeze an answer out of him, it was ONE sentence, possibly two, but nothing to give either of us any sort of passing grade.

Once it was over, I remember shoving people through the hallways so I could reach my locker, grab what I needed, and run to the bus before anyone could stop me. I knew word probably traveled fast and I just wasn’t in the mood to deal with anymore of the criticism the stress was absolutely unbearable.

Once I was through the bustling hallways filled with people that seemed like they were packed like sardines, I felt the weight lifted off of my shoulders and chest. I stopped running as I was no longer in the halls and was towards where the buses had been stationed waiting to take the hoards of children and teenagers home. I hustled to my seat (usually I’d go about halfway but today I picked the front), all the way in the front next to that weird girl with the Chinchilla, kept my head down, and waited for my stop.

By far the worse moment ever, that and when Manny touched my boob in the middle of Science class and the teacher made a joke about it. That was my third day of school y’all, but that’s a whole other topic about teacher ethics and what is and isn’t appropriate for a teacher to be doing, and thusly, a topic for another day.