Monday, March 24, 2008

Frogs Don't Belong in Boxes


Lately I find myself slipping into daydreams about going home.

What it will be like...

I find myself asking the same questions that I asked about Switzerland before I came here.

  • Will I fit in?
  • Will they accept me?
  • Will I find a friend?

Haha.. sounds lame, I admit, but what can you expect? I have left you all for a year and things have happend. I've changed and there are going to be some aspects of me you will just have to adjust to.

I don't feel like being forced and

conformed into the cliques

and cliches of Inglemoor!

It [Âmerican High Schools, such as IHS]are too much like a film, looking back. Too many genres, groups, they promote a school of acceptance but after coming to Switzerland, the school doesn't seem as ideal as it was.

Don't get me wrong. I am proud to be a Viking and am happy to return, but there are some things (that is an exageration, a lot of things) that I will miss. I know Inglemoor is a great school, probably one of the best. However...

Switzerland was one of the first times I got a fresh start in my teen years with a group of people. I already know who I am and want to be, and I got to be that in Switzerland. What can I say, I am a bit socially awkward, but in Switzerland and with the exchangers, that was ok! That was me! And I was special. I was the American. I was the Magic Frog! I totally feel accepted here in Switzerland. I don't feel stupid here. I don't feel like I am being judged.

Sigh. America. America. America. Judgemental. Tiny boxes. Sufficating.

Sorry if you can't follow my train of thought here..... it is still unclear in my brain as well.


Caitie said...

Yes. I do follow your train of thought here. actually, I think I follow it quite well. (yet I probably will go off on my own tangent)

I agree, most of these kids who are my friends, I have bascialy grown up with since 5th grade and such. And you know what? I am totally different than I was in 5th/7th grade. And I agree with you. It is way difficult to break out of that stigma. and seriously, that sucks.

That was one ( of the many) reasons I did Running Start. There are so many new people there that it is not hard to become a "new person" in the process. I acted as myself. The new, improved Caitie. Less flighty, more serious, but who still knows how to have a good time. And guess what? I made freinds really quick. And the neat thing is that most were way older than me, ( 18-21) And the cool thing was, lets say that there was a person you really didn't care for. the probability of that person being in your next class is SLIM. But that isn't the point. there are no cliques. I know this is only from one perspective ( and come on, there are several perspectives) but I feel Running start did a lot for me. And the cool thing is, I had a few bothell students in my classes and yet they act different towards me too.

I guess what I am attempting to say, is that I understand the pressures of cliques, labels and stigmas attatched to people throughout high school. (I was way dorky and geeky ) but there are ways to escape that label. Even if you do return to inglemoor, (because you have said to me you maybe don't want to return, and do want to return and you don't know) you can shed those labels and such.

Are you a different person from this experience? I sure think so. and people will notice. And I bet if you act different, ( not to the extreme...ha ha)
and here is the big one, TREAT yourself different, people will too. Nobody is going to treat you different if you do not believe that you are different yourself. If you act that, "well I guess i was gone for a long time, I guess I will try to pick up where I left off" people will act that way too. But if come back "I am back. I am still Maggie, but the new and improved maggie" (but not shoving it down everyone's throats) people will react well. I bet on it.

As for coming home. Man, Maggie. I can NOT help you there the way I wish I could. I have never been in your shoes at all, so ther is no way I can describe coming back after a full year and where do you try to fit in, where do jump in, and what do you leave behind.

I can say this. People are going to be EXCITED that you are back. And I am under the impression you are going to need a full week to "recover" and try to get everything under control. I would suggest no people ( other than family) see you then. you can do whatever, but I am just telling you what I would do in your situation. ( because, hey, like I said, I have never done anything of the sort) and then "emerge: back into your social and other "lives" and when you do, don't try to tell everything that happened immediatly. We have kept up with you as much as we could with blogs, email, mail etc. and we want you! then slowly, gradually, through time, tell us, and beware! we have things to tell you too! Act as naturally as you can. (when I mean naturally don’t try to be all proper and what not. We want YOU) and then try to understand our world too. You have been gone for a year. You have been out of many many things. But hey! Haven’t we done the same thing? We both have different lives that have been altered, and we need to respect each other in that. In my opinion, ( which is one of many) we should try not to force ourselves back into the “circle” or whatnot. Do you see what I am trying to say…maybe not…ok, let me try again. You may be left out of certain jokes, or memories, but I guess what I am trying to say, is so have all of us, so we should try to respect that and move on, and continue making those new memories and jokes etc with you.

Wow, this was long! I love you and I hope what I said made sense and wasn’t condescending, because it wasn’t meant that way. At all. And I hope you see I am just trying to help! ( oh, and I am not trying to get you to do Running start, but that I was trying to get you to see another view of what I did, and how it is related to you. Maybe) I love you lots and I hope to hear from you soon.


Hilary Rose said...

wish i felt the same way about Germany. In Germany, I have found that people here are more judgemental and cliquey here than in America.
When living in America, I always looked down on the cliquey, judgmental, human being we are. Now when I look back on America, I miss the way americans are when it comes to meeting new people, socializing, and making friends.
I suppose we, as exchange students, have different experiences with their countries of choice.

I love Germany though, don't get me wrong...I just sometimes wish Germans were a little bit open minded about meeting new people.

That's great that you are having a great time in die Schwiez! I can't believe it is almost over for all of us! :(


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