Journal · mine

Solitary to Sociable (Friends Pt.1)

I was a loner.

I didn’t have my own group of friends.

I didn’t even have someone who I can surely call a best friend.

Or even just a friend.

I feel like I’m that person who will never fit in despite of the attempts done to be one of them.

I feel like I’m that person who’s just there.

I feel like I’m that person no one notices until they’re gone.

This was me.

This used to be me.

Back in the time– back when I was still in elementary and secondary school– I was tagged as the silent one. You can never hear me say more than 50 words not school-related for the whole year.

I was an easy target because of that. My classmates call me names, continuously tease me and insult how I look.

I wasn’t at all that quiet when we were younger, because I also joined in their games and talks sometimes.

It only started when we were in 6th grade. Of course, adolescent stage. What else would you expect? Crushes, teasing, roaming around with only just your friends, the whole puberty stage. My classmates got so much confident and began joining clubs and forming their own groups. Guess who got left out?

Me.

I DID have my own group of friends when we were in the 6th grade, but it all changed when my used-to-be best friend gave me a letter personally, that she doesn’t want to be best friends anymore because she has her own now, and she had a lot of them (she later denied that she didn’t send my anything but I didn’t believe her).

That was the time when I thought that no one wants me. No one likes the idea of me being their friend.

So that was when I isolated myself. I never tried to make friends with our new classmates, and when I feel like I’m losing one, I just let them go, and I never knew why.

Then there’s a classmate of mine. That same person who I allowed to copy my answers during a quiz in Math, where I got a mistake and she had a perfect score. She started backstabbing me because I cannot give her what she wanted: we couldn’t transfer to the room on the 2nd floor of the building because I broke my foot, I couldn’t teach her how to make a crane origami because I was tired.

High school may be hard/annoying/awkward/irritating/etc. but admit it, you’re going to miss it when it ends.

This is what most people would say, but in my case, no.

I didn’t really enjoy my life in high school, nor did I miss being with the whole class. For the four years I’ve been there, I wished that I could have been somewhere else. A place where I’m able to change and reintroduce myself as a whole new person to others.

Then I graduated and applied for college.

I didn’t know anyone.

I was familiar with some people but never did we become close even at one point.

I never knew how to make friends on my own.

For once, I was scared of the idea of having no friends.

Classes started with me knowing that there were at least 3 people I’ve known who I’m going to be with for the next four years but I thought, Nah, 3 people couldn’t stop me from reinventing myself.

But you know what? I was soooo wrong.

Apparently, I couldn’t go out of my personal bubble when there are people who have been with me for at least 5 years of our lives.

I just can’t jump from being an introvert to being an extrovert. I know that if I did, they’d be shocked and would be asking me why I never did that when we were still at school.

No. I just had to transform little by little so they’ll never really notice.

Just like what I decided to do, I seem like I barely had any progress. But only when I’m with those people I knew. Because whenever they’re not around, my change seemed a little prominent

I began chatting with others, especially these 2 persons in class, who I became close to after one semester… or up until they became an item 3 months into college, and that was when the guy began to confide his concerns with me and told me that I was one of his few “best friends” who was good at observing, that I was the only one who knew who was abstract-minded, and that it appears that I was actually good at giving at advice that he couldn’t believe that I never had close friends during high school. Of course I was flattered because no one has told me that for 16 years of my life.

There were originally 13 of us in class, 3 of whom I knew from our previous school, 4 of whom I became close after one academic year, 1 who was always absent due to whole day gaming at internet cafes using his allowance and school fee, and the rest I became friends with but not that close.

Fast forward to the second semester of our second year in college, there were 9 of us left, 7 from the original 13 (6 girls and a boy), a transferee and an irregular student. Two of the 3 people I knew have shifted courses and transferred schools, so I was left with one whom I’ve been classmates with since we were 5 (seriously). I was still scared of going all out, as our other classmates have already known me as the silent type (except for the transferee and irregular student because I was able to hang out with them more than the others on our first summer class).

First semester, third year. It was when we were randomly grouped into two for our on-the-job training at the operating room, which only allows 6-8 students, no excess, so our only choice was go 5:4. I was one of the 5-person group, which was composed of me (obv), the transferee, two who I got close with during our OJT at the delivery room and one (the guy of the group) I was never particularly close to. As weeks passed, I got to know them better. We chitchatted whenever there were no surgeries, bonded over making of cherry balls (along with our clinical instructor who was very much motherly) and took turns being partners in a case. These were the people I became really close to over the course of a semester.

Second semester, third year. We had our duty at the medical ward, where we were also randomly grouped every week. That was also the time when I got closer to the other four, including (finally) my classmate of 15 years.

We all started to hang out more as a whole group rather than go out in pairs or groups of three or leave to join other friends who are from different courses. We became each other’s confidant and comfort on bad times. We discuss matters together without leaving one behind. We never left each others’ side. We vowed to support each other no matter what.

That was when I felt that there’s a group of people who I can finally call friends.

That was when I knew that there are people who I can finally call best friends.

That was when I knew that these people are the ones I can call a family.

That was when I knew that there’s another place that I can call home.

-Claude

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