The Week 13 prompt asks Why Me? What experience as a kid put this question in my mind and mouth. At what point did I think the world unfair to me personally? I first started writing about my 2014 cancer diagnosis. Clearly, I was not a kid when this happened. But after I wrote a few paragraphs in scene, because the prompt does not want or call for description, something else came to mind.
As a high school sophomore, a teacher made me call him at home to apologize for saying “shut up” in front of a parent. He had embarrassed me by saying I was one of his top students, so I said, “Oh, shut up.” He also angered me by saying “one of” instead of “the top student.” My sister worked with him at a Saturday school and she came home the next day. “Boy, are you in trouble! she said. She handed me a slip of paper with his phone number. He required an apology.
He was in his second year of teaching and very hung up on what others, particularly parents, thought. He never thought about the impact of his words on me. I curled up in a ball in my bed and cried for hours before writing out a script and calling.
Why me? There was another dynamic developing which took me thirty years to understand. That spring I became his student secretary. By the time I graduated, he had gifted me thirteen necklaces, one of which was a heart-shaped locket, a stuffed animal, a key chain, and the world’s ugliest earrings for pierced ears (which I didn’t have then).
Why me, indeed?
What event in your life made you ask, “Why me?” Write about it.