Jamie, Age 12, Warminster, PA

As I wake up, I can already feel the butterflies in my stomach. Itís surprising how bright it is; itís 7:30 am. The first day of school. My mom stands next to me, handing me my clothes for the day. I see that I am wearing a yellow shirt, with innumerable colored polka dots on it, a denim skirt, and purple and black sneakers. I wear my hair pulled up in a braid with some loose ends making strands of my hair fall down the side of my face.

I see my brothers and sisters, my sister dressed almost identical to me, but instead she has a different colored shirt with different colored polka dots.

When we finish getting ready with all the other things we need to do, there is only one thing left. Actually going to school.

More butterflies collect in my stomach, but itís a weird feeling. Iím excited to go because itís something new, but Iím terrified of the future ahead. On the way to the bus stop, my mom and half-sister bring their camera.

Waiting for the bus to come, I try to be nonchalant, but my nerves get the best of me. Especially when I see the bus, a long, sunlit-yellow vehicle. I watch the kids form a line at the door, from adjacent to straight, leaving their parents behind. I ponder the thought that everybody seems so calm and relaxed, but I am as scared as a deer caught in the headlights. I hug my mom with all the love I can give her, and I walk away. Thatís when the tears start to come. I am about to run back to mom because I am nervous to go to school, but I am forced to go on anyway because there are kids waiting behind me, annoyed at having to wait.

I go up the three steps of the bus, like Iím going on the walk of shame, and sit in the first seat, closer to the doors, next to my sister. The bus has brown seats that are kind of old looking and feel rough. There is an echoing sound when you talk, and it smells almost heavy. I have tears going down my face, almost like the raindrops slipping down the window next to me. I hear the engine roar to life, and I call for my mom, ďNo, Mommy! No!Ē but the bus has already pulled away. I see my mom waving to me, a look of sympathy on her face, almost morose. I slump against the seat until we arrive at school.

When I arrive, I put my stuff away quietly and sit down. Iím on a maroon carpet, smooth yet rough, hearing the quietness of everybody in the room, my eyes blurry with tears. Maybe Iím not the only one whoís fearful. I realize that right now, there are a bunch of kids going to school, like me, who are having their first day of school. I know I will be going to school for years to come, so why not get over it? I may be morose, like my mom when I left, but thereís no use if Iím going to go through this almost every day, every week, every month, every year. Separation is sad, but you have to move on. This is a day I will always remember because it shows how much a person can change in life.

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