Breaking Out of My Shell

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Madison writes about her journey to become more confident.

Madison Palmer, Staff Writer

In middle school, I was known as the shy, quiet girl who nobody talked to. I created my own little shell, and I kept my distance because I felt as if I did not fit in. I sat by myself at lunch and isolated myself in any group activity we did. 

I dealt with hateful comments which seemed to worsen as time went on. Every night, I would cry to my mom about what all happened at school, and she would tell me it would all be ok. At the end of seventh grade, I fell down mentally. I would cry myself to sleep and did not spend much time outside of my room. I would not leave for hours at a time mainly because I would fall asleep or try to find a way to calm my nerves. 

At a certain point in my life, I realized that I had no friends, and I didn’t even know myself anymore. The most important parts of me disappeared from under my feet. After a long time of this affecting my happiness, my parents made the decision to move, so I could go to school with new people that had no idea who I was.

The summer before freshman year I spent a lot of time at home. I did not spend much time in public because we were in the process of our move to the new house. Nerves shot through my body all because I attended a brand new school with people I never met before.

All summer, I asked my mom to homeschool me or find an alternative, so I would not have to deal with any more pain from kids my age. After a month of a constant argument, the time had come for me to start at Legacy. I walked in the door with my legs shaking and on the edge of tears. I took a few deep breaths before I stepped foot in my class and sat down away from everyone else. 

The days went by slowly and after a while, I finally felt comfortable enough to sit with the crowd and join in on conversations. I told my mom that I felt wanted by people and I loved my time at school. 

Freshman year went just fine and when sophomore year came around I felt so excited that my three closest friends would finally go to school with me. When I saw them on the first day I ran to them and gave them the biggest hug. I knew I would be just fine in school if I had them by my side. 

Throughout this journey, I attended counseling and tried various coping mechanisms to get through the social anxiety I had encountered. I tried to go to more social places such as the park or the mall and make new friends there. If I could do it in a more public area I knew I could do it at school.