Marianne told me that her daughter, Deseret, said, "I am going to stop reading Thelma's blog. It's too depressing."
No, she wasn't talking about my blurry pictures or grammatical errors or narcissism. She was comparing her school to Braeden's school.
I don't want Desi to stop reading my blog because 1) frankly, I need all the readers I can get (see blurry pictures, grammatical errors and narcissism) and 2) I love Deseret and don't want her to feel sad because of me.
Desi goes to the same school I went to, the same school her mother went to, the same school her grandparents went to. (And I think our combined efforts have compensated for the trouble my dad caused when he was there.)
It's a good place.
They don't have a large drama department, complete with a costume room, make up room and workshop for set design. They never will.
That's the thing with comparisons. You can compare yourself to someone else all day and night and nothing good will come of it except you'll feel bad.
Dear Desi, consider the wonderful things about your school. Because they are there. In six years at that school (7th -12th grades), I didn't have a lock on my locker and it would have been inconceivable to have something stolen. I didn't lock my car either. No one did. You are likely given the benefit of the doubt 9 times out of 10 by your teachers. They know you. They know your mom and dad. They know your older sister. When I went there, I was a Dahl and I was Marianne's sister and that helped. You're Marianne's daughter. Wowee wow wow.
You'll have the same teachers over and over. Whether they're good or bad teachers, this can be an advantage. You will learn their style. You will learn how to get good grades from them. You will learn which teachers will let you get away with things and how often.
You have all sorts of opportunities. You can participate in just about any activity you choose, concurrently. They'll work around you. If you have sports practice, play practice will be later. If you're in the pep band and on the basketball team, you can do both. You'll slip from the court to the band and it will work. (Ask your mom about running off the basketball court to play the drums.)
And on maybe the biggest payday of small school life, someday it will be your graduation. The whole town will show up and they'll all know you because they've watched you participate in everything just like they watched your mom participate in everything. They'll be rooting for you. Your teachers will have an invested interest in your after high school plans because you are such a part of their lives. Your graduating class will feel like your family; kids you've spent enough time with that you know all their birthdays, you know their brothers and sisters and where their parents work, you know their plans and dreams.
Someday you may move away from your small town and infrequently visit your high school but if you're like me, when you once again walk down those halls, you'll feel the support of a tiny school in a tiny town permeating you still.
At Wells High School, I was somebody and I was loved. And that matters.