Features

The First Minutes of Immaculate Heart

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Photo courtesy of Mike Hamlett, Caitlin Brown’17 and Patrizia Proscia

There were a million fluttering butterflies trapped in my stomach the morning my freshman year of high school started. I was adorned in my scarlet plaid kilt and white polo shirt completed with the itchy forest green socks pulled up to my knees and the clunky chocolate brown shoes. Fidgeting with the circular buttons on my clean, white shirt, I waited for an older student to unlock the door for a line of students that included myself. My heavily creased and slightly yellowed schedule, not yet committed to my memory, was clutched in my clammy hand as a source of comfort. Laden by a brand new book bag filled with pristine school supplies, I made my way into the unfamiliar school with a racing heart. I stopped to readjust my laptop bag slung over one shoulder every few steps, to keep it from slipping off of my body. Everywhere I looked there were familiar faces I had seen before, but could not put a name to. There was a line of girls, waiting at the vending machines, purchasing cold drinks and snacks. I could smell the sweet scent of freshly baked confections wafting from the cafeteria as I strolled through the crowd, anxiously trying to make my way to freshman hallway.

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Photo courtesy of Olivia Cantarella’18

Everywhere I turned there were welcoming upperclassmen, directing younger students to the classrooms and various other rooms they were looking for. I proceeded to climb the congested stairwell and follow the constant stream of students to the second floor, where freshmen hallway is. Apprehensively, I strode through the doors behind a cluster of acquainted freshmen. The hallway was already teeming with students, catching up with old friends, and forming new bonds. Some looked confused and nervous, as I’m sure I did, but others, surprisingly, looked confident. Everyone was wearing the same orderly uniform, consisting of a unique, plaid kilt, white collared polo, long green socks, and brown leather shoes. Freshmen were situated on the floor, with their recent laptops perched on their legs as they browse the Internet and limbs haphazardly sticking out into the middle of the thronged hallway. Light blue lockers lined the walls, some with locks secured, others unlocked; a sign of trust among the students. My locker, with my lock tightly fastened, halfway down the hallway, was obstructed by a gaggle of students. The metal lock was cold in my hands as I entered my combination, which I had memorized the night before. As I tugged the lock, in hopes of it opening smoothly, it clinked unforgivingly, indicating I had entered my combination incorrectly. It took my sweaty hands a few times to get my combination correct, before I could finally open my locker. My extra books and healthy lunch were placed in my locker, prior to heading to my homeroom. A few minutes later, the bell blared, signaling the start of homeroom. My folded schedule was still tightly gripped in my hands as I walked quickly to the room full of unfamiliar faces, where my day really began.

By Anna Mullens’20, Staff Writer

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