You either had a good time, or you absolutely hated it. To me, the desire to fit in and feel a belonging was paramount as a freshman joining a sea of new faces and cliques, not to mention the unfamiliar territory I would be spending the next four years. Intimidation and fear were a couple of the emotions I experienced at first. But after some coarse tuning and a little faith, I was a typical "high school kid."
I recognized early the need to have friends. And to me, the more friends I could get the better. I didn't care what ethnicity, social status, or clique they were affiliated with. I would befriend anyone, and everyone I could. My best friend introduced me to the school choir, which would be my first of many activities I'd engage in in high school. In my opinion I couldn't sing, but the interaction with others, and developing friendships made up for that.
Even though I never went punk like Mr. Graffin, my interest in music would shape my life and provide a foundation for my sense of belonging in high school. It was also a great way to meet girls, which was of course the motivation to get up and go to school each day.
As I got through my sophomore year, I realized I wanted to do more. Since singing in choir wasn't the "coolest" thing to do, I decided to try out for the schools baseball team. I was a decent ball player, and after the first couple of practices I gained the respect of my fellow teammates and was considered part of the team. The friendships I would make playing baseball would last a lifetime. As I look back, it was at that point I had...