Sophomore year was probably the best out of my four years of high school. Things really started looking up for me. The day before school started I found I had lunch with Sarah, who was my good friend back in 7th grade. We made plans to sit together at lunch and so we did. And from there on out we were history. She really became my go to. WE DID EVERYTHING TOGETHER. Becoming friends with her really saved me in high school. I made so many new friends. Like I finally had a steady group of friends. I had Quiara (goggs), Sarah, Courtney, and Katie. Katie at the time wasn’t in our group, but she was still my best friend.

I still hated going to school. I still had anxiety about going, but having friends made the whole thing a lot easier.

I started dressing better, I gained some confidence, and I was a lot better at making friends. My friend group was really the coolest. We had a bench that we would all meet at before first period, everyone knew us for it. We would sit together at lunch, scream at each other in the hallways, we were just really immature 15 year olds.

Something that Sarah did for me that I will always be thankful for is bringing me back with my best friend since 1st grade. Adrienne and I really just broke apart in 7th grade. No drama, no hate, we just drifted apart. I always had a soft spot for her, but me reaching out to people wasn’t possible. I couldn’t do it, I was scared. So one day, Sarah mentioned hanging out with Adrienne and sure enough that same night we did. And boyyyy, did I forget how much fun we had together. That night we swam with my dog in the bathtub, took pictures, and hung out with my boyfriend at the time. The day Adrienne and I became partners in crime again: ICONIC.

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We soon started going to every football game together. I was still ugly, still decked out for every theme, and met one of my all time best friends to this exact day. Quiara was always said to marry Noah when she was older. Me not knowing who Noah was didn’t understand the hype about him. Until we made our little family. Noah and Quiara as our mom and dad, Sarah and I as the cool ass kids. And from there on out Noah was referred to “Dad” and it really was me and Sarah’s job to annoy him.

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While things were going really great socially, I remember hitting a hard time in my life. A very delayed hard time. While my mom had cancer back when I was in 5th grade, for some reason the memories started haunting me sophomore year. I would stay up all night thinking about her bald head, and thinking back on me crying everyday at school, thinking my mom was going to die. To top all of this off, my mom broke her leg walking in our yard one day. Totally walking, doing nothing to actually break her leg. While this didn’t seem like a big deal, with the history of cancer the doctors had to rule out bone cancer, because how can someone break their leg walking??? My mom was really scared, I remember her crying so my instincts told me to be scared to. And I was. I was really freakin’ scared. And so going to school started to suck again. I wanted to be with my mom and take care of her with a broken leg and just be reassured that she didn’t have bone cancer. Waiting for the bone scan KILLED me. And I held it in until one day, I just couldn’t hold it in. I walked into lunch 20 minutes late, saw my friend Kenzie who asked if we had heard back from the doctor, and I lost it. In the middle of the lunch room, Kenzie hugging me, and me bawling my eyes out. Full blown, mascara running down my cheeks. That type of crying. The one thing I was good at was acting strong around my mom and crying by myself about it. And that’s what I did. BUT, minutes after crying I get a text from my mom with the email saying the bone scan was clear!! And I just sat at the lunch table laughing at myself for having a break down ten minutes ago.

First semester blew by and second semester was here. And second semester was great! I had a whole new crew in my chemistry class. All we did was go to the bathroom to take pictures together, get called the devil by our teachers, and break some glass when doing labs. We were loud, obnoxious, and lazy and I loved it. We all hated our teacher together and they really were some of my good friends. Here’s us not doing our work:

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For spring break that year, I went to Mexico with my family and while that was great, what happened when we were on the plane coming home was a lot better. In 7th grade I wrote a paper about a hero in my life and I chose my mom’s cancer nurse navigator. A big magazine got ahold of my mom requesting me to do a photoshoot and let them publish my paper in the magazine. I was THRIVING. How cool being able to let other people see how much nurse navigators help guide families through the cancer process.

So, when I got back from Mexico we went and did the photoshoot and it was the coolest thing ever. For me and my mom to share this experience together meant the world.

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A few weeks later I TURNED 16! I was so excited. I could get my license, I was basically an adult. I had never felt so loved in one day ever. I got 44 birthday shoutouts (yes I counted), all my friends brought me gifts to school, someone even offered to tie my shoe for me. Not that I couldn’t tie my own shoe but I mean, if you’re offering??? But when I got to my last class of the day, my day really turned around. I was in my medical class and we were doing a lab as a class. If one person didn’t do exactly what they were supposed to do it would mess the whole thing was. And yeah you guessed it, I was the one person who messed up. I knew it, my teacher knew it, the whole class knew it. And for some reason the world was ending because I accidentally wrote the wrong number down??? The whole class, I kid you not, screamed at me. Called me names, told me I was dumb, told the teacher to fail me. It was TERRIBLE. I walked straight out of the class and went in the bathroom and cried my eyes out. Not that me sneaking out of this class was unusual ( I did it three times a week) but I was really upset. My teacher knew I was upset. He emailed me that night apologizing for the class calling me names and that he hoped they didn’t ruin my birthday. NEWS FLASH: I was sensitive so yeah it ruined my day Mr. Link!!!!

I went home that day, all sappy and down, but man it was my birthday!!!!! and I HAD A DATE. Cute boy from another school who was going to pick me up and take me to dinner before my friends came over until…. “Hey, maybe we shouldn’t hang out tonight..” Uh huh, I got ditched. On my birthday. By the guy I liked. So back to square one, I went and cried in my room. Put my steelers pj bottoms on and my sweatshirt and I wanted my birthday to be CANCELED. But I had three great friends supposed to come over and I wasn’t ditching them like that boy ditched me. And thank god I didn’t, because my mom surprised me and Sarah with JUSTIN BIEBER FLOOR SEATS. OH YEAHHHH. Two white girls, screaming our hearts out because we were going to Justin Bieber. Here was me and Sarah’s exact reaction. Sarah’s reaction: Cute. Mine: Not so much.

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Past the whole birthday thing, the end of the school year was approaching. Thank god. I ended up reconnecting with two of my best friends from 8th grade, John and Mitchell. We started hanging out all the time. We were a gang!!! Took sunset pictures together, went bowling, had bonfires.

During the last week of school, we didn’t have to be at school until 11am. So the gang and I took advantage of that and went to breakfast, hung out in the school parking lot, really living our lives to the fullest clearly. I even spent the first day of summer with them, burning all our school papers and play hide and seek in the dark. Real mature.

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And that was sophomore year. The best year I had of high school. I really was the happiest I had been in months, even though I had a few down falls. Somehow me wearing leggings and crop tops to school everyday got me awesome friends. How ironic. And while my grades were probably the worst they had ever been, I passed, was happy, and really just thrived. But just wait until Junior year, because Junior year WAS THE WORST YEAR OF MY WHOLE ENTIRE LIFE. No exaggerating there.

Oh and by the way… Sarah and I went to Justin Bieber.

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Trends my sophomore year: Pokemon Go, Kylie Lip Kits, Snapchat filters, Justin Bieber, Hoverboards, LEGGINGS LEGGINGS LEGGINGS (gross), long hair, The cinnamon challenge, thigh gaps, “finstas”, #Byefelicia, Kardashian twitter fights

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