In my family, we have a tradition of sharing the “highs and lows” of the day while we eat dinner. My family consists of my mother, who’s a child psychologist, my father, who is a stay-at-home-dad (I call him Mr. Mom because he plays the role a mother usually plays), me, and my 15 year old sister, Mirabai. The way Highs and Lows works is that everybody takes turns sharing the best parts of their day (their highs) and the worst parts of their day (their lows). Mom encourages us to share our honest thoughts and to be open in sharing with each other. My dad decides to go first tonight. “My high is that I didn’t have to do a ton of laundry today and my low is that I was lonely while my family was at school and work.” He shares.
My mom goes next. “My high is right now because I get to see all of you guys, and my low was doing paperwork for my patients because it is boring, tedious, and time consuming.”
Mirabai was third. “My high is that I went to Main Street Coffee with my friends after school today, and that was fun. My low is that I have a giant English paper due on Friday and it’s going to be a lot of work.”
I was last. “I have no highs today. My low is that I got bullied.”
“Oh, honey.” Mom sighed. “What happened?”
I proceeded to tell them about the little trick that Kayla, Avalon, Maggie, and Mercedes played on me at recess. Then I start crying about how I’ll never make any new friends.
“The only advice I have for you is that sixth grade sucks and that those girls are worthless scumbags that have zero potential in life. They may be popular now, but when you guys are all adults, you’ll be a world-famous author and they’ll all be garbage truck drivers if they don’t end up inside of a garbage truck.” Mirabai said encouragingly. I started laughing, picturing the GGG in garbage truck driver uniforms. Major LOL moment.
“Your sister is right, Devyn. You know what happened to Karl and Danny?” Dad said. Karl and Danny were the two kids that picked on him when he was my age. He’d told this story a thousand million times.
“They still live in your hometown in New Jersey and they’re both single McDonald’s cashiers. You are married to the love of your life and have two incredible kids.” I finish for him.
“I once had a patient named Bobby Keller. I was always getting reports from his school about him being mean to other kids. Now, he’s serving a ten-year term in prison for selling drugs to minors.” Mom added her words of encouragement. “Nothing good ever happens to bullies.”
“May I be excused?” I asked my parents.
“Sure,” my mom said. “You’ve clearly had a long day.”
I went upstairs to my room, booted up my laptop, and wrote an email to my best and only friend asking for advice.
To: “Jesy Perez (firstname.lastname@example.org)”
From: “Devyn De La Rosa (email@example.com)”
Subject: I miss u!!!!
I got bullied at school today. You know Kayla Davis, Avalon Brown, Maggie Jones, and Mercedes Montoya? Apparently, they have a club called The Glittery Girls Gang. I asked to join them, and Kayla (the leader of the club) said that if I ran from the swingset to the slide in under 30 seconds, I’d be in the Glittery Girls Gang. Well, I ran in 28 seconds and they called me stupid and a bunch of other mean names. I know you’d never do that to me. I just wish that you were here. You would have stood up for me, I know it.
I miss u sooooooooooo much!
I got a reply back a few minutes later.
To: “Devyn De La Rosa (firstname.lastname@example.org)”
From: “Jesica Perez (email@example.com)”
Subject: I miss u!!!!
Sorry about the GGG. I never really knew how mean they were until now. Just know that they don’t deserve u as friends. You are really awesome and the best friend anyone could ask for.
Can’t wait to see u this summer in Massachusetts!!!
Your best friend always and forever,