A guest post by The Broken Girl. A little history…
I went to a kind of boarding school for a year. I had finished the mandatory years of schooling and I still hadn’t a clue what I wanted to be when I grew up. Writer had followed me through school, but really I wanted to be an astrophysicist. I remember telling that to the guidance councillor and she held back a giggle and told me I’d never make it to high school with my grades. (I did and with good grades).
But back on track. I was shy and one of my teachers mentioned that maybe an extra year at a boarding school would just be the right thing to get me out of my shell and give me a year more to think of my future. My parents agreed and we picked a school. Nothing too Christian and nothing too sporty. After the summer I got dropped off at what should be the best year of my life.
After the first two months of being homesick, even though I went back every weekend, I settled in and started making friends and enjoyed my stay. But as many things with your childhood and youth, your grown up you is sometimes looking back thinking what the heck? This is one of those things.
My fist roommate was a sweet and shy girl. She was my first friend at the school. We made the Kitty Cat club. There was a list of rules too one of them being “always wear clean underwear in case of an accident”.
She was always up and dressed before I even woke up. I was never a morning person so I thought nothing of it until another girl told me that it was because of the cuts. My roommate was depressed and would cut into her arms. Looking back I sometimes wonder if the school was more a parking lot for damaged children than an actual school.
After the first school break around 10 kids got kicked out for drug use. At the end of the year 3 girls had tried to commit suicide. I remember sitting in a room with a flock of girls listening to music when a deeply shaken girl came in. She had just found her roommate in a bathroom splattered with blood. The girl made it through.
In many cases the teachers were just as wacky as the children. There was the headmaster who taught German and if you got him on a good sidetrack he would talk away the lesson. His sweet wife who taught a class on how to interpret your dreams. And finally the music teacher who had to stand in for the chemistry teacher when they were one teacher short halfway through the term.
Quoting my young self “he was an idiot!”. This came out in the lesson where he did an experiment with magnesium and sulfuric acid. He told us that according to the text book he needed a safety screen but he figured what the heck! He dropped in a good bit of magnesium and then some more just for effect.
Next thing we know the jar exploded. I was on the first row and my text book was covered in pieces of glass. We got the rest of the lesson off and for some reason he wasn’t asked back the year after.
It was an adventurous year. I made some great friends, came home with some awesome stories but sometimes I wonder how we managed to make it through in one piece.
The Broken Girl