-To a teacher whose name I can no longer remember.
I don’t know if you remember me, one of many students you have seen in class. I was the one who vanished, who slowly faded into the background. I was the one who stopped coming to school. I was the one who loved learning, but was afraid to stand out. I avoided eye contact, was joyful when praised and devastated when reproached. One day I stopped going to school, the anxiety and pain too much to bear. I always wondered if I was missed, if anyone cared. Was I a ghost that was left unnoticed?
I loved your classes, I loved to learn, but I was broken. I took your classes like a zombie following the motions. I follow a routine; I did my homework when other used the time to talk to friends. I wanted to look like I had something to do….I didn’t want anyone to notice I was alone. Lunch was the worst, I often eat by myself. I enjoyed reading; I enjoyed it more than any other time in school. I was shown the works of Shakespeare, and the poems of Poe. I could have been a good student; I could have gotten top grades. I was distracted. I couldn’t focus past the anxiety. I felt like I was being laughed at always, I felt I was being picked on constantly. Sometimes other students would pick on me, other times it was simply in my head.
I wanted to die. I was alone and empty. I longer felt any love. It was too hard, the weight on me turned to physical illness. My mind turned fear into pain, I could no longer think about going back without falling to the ground. As silent as my life in school was, my departure was the same. I shortly got my GED afterword, I found it easy. However my mind was left to wonder if I was missed.
I am alright now. Am alive, I lived. I moved forward little by little. It was anything but easy, it still is not easy. Never forget the students in the back of your class, reading alone. I remember the little kindness you showed me, I remember the small support. Perhaps it was lost in the pain for a while, but I remember it. I am who I am now, and nothing can change that, am happy with that. Part of who I am was also because of you.