I received another late night knock on the door this week. Surprisingly, it wasn’t for my son. It was the neighbor girl Abby who was crying bearing gifts of cookies and a handwritten apology note for my youngest daughter Arabella.
I found out there was a problem when I picked up the girls after school. Arabella wasn’t talking to Abby and Abby had no idea why. Arabella mentioned something to me later about the girls having friendship issues due to their extreme differences in body shape. Abby is in 7th grade and is very tiny. Some of the kids were teasing her saying that she looked like a kindergartner. Arabella is in 8th grade and is on the hefty side. I can see a future of her always struggling with her weight.
It is open to debate, Abby may or may not have said something about rather being small than fat. Arabella may have found this offensive.
Abby’s mom sent me a message wanting to know why Arabella was upset with Abby. I responded that they were having a discussion about body image. Abby’s mom replied that Abby admitted to saying some not very nice things to Arabella. In response Abby’s mom said, “I can’t believe this. I’m incredibly sorry. I’m just mind blown and upset. Abby has always been so sweet and considerate and I have no idea where this came from. I sincerely apologize.”
Then Abby showed up at the door crying offering her apologies.
Abby’s mom was very stressed out by the whole situation. To be honest, it didn’t really phase me.
Abby is the oldest child. They are going through this whole middle school yucky time for the first time. Arabella is my youngest child. We have been down this road several times before. We have received worse knocks on the door.
Abby is a good kid. I didn’t want them to get worked up too much over this. I told them that sometimes people say things they don’t mean or that they regret later. No hard feelings..
I remember my middle school days. It is a terrible time for kids. It seems like everyone has to fit into the same cookie cutter mold.
When I was in middle school, I was the smallest in my class. One day I wore my green stretch pants to school and everyone called me frog legs. I bemoaned the fact that at 13 I was still asked if I was under 10. The adults all said that someday looking young would pay off for me (it did).
Some of my friends had braces and glasses. For awhile, I wanted that too. I remember walking around the house with a gum wrapper held on my teeth by an opened up paper clip. I also wore my babysitter’s glasses and looked at myself in the mirror which she said would cause me to need glasses. Apparently, she was wrong. (Why do I remember such crazy stupid things??)
I think the middle school years are the hardest. Especially if you are really short, really heavy, have a big nose, can’t afford to wear the right clothes, or are different in any way.
Woe to the popular kids too. They have to jump through a lot of hoops to stay popular.
I am soooo happy that this will be my last year as a mother of middle schooler.