Dear Andrew Celments,
As I read your book, Things Not Seen, I became deeply touched. When this poor boy named Bobby became invisible one morning, I realized how strange it would feel to not see your own body and be treated as though you were a ghost. You have brought me to an understanding that everyone is God's creation. Everyone has feelings and deserves to be treated with respect. After I read your book, I made a promise to myself that I would never treat anyone with ignorance ever again. Even though people cannot be physically invisible, sometimes people are treated as though they don't exist.
I have experienced this feeling many times. Some people call it exclusion, ignorance, or just plain rudeness, but I think of it as disrespect. As a teenager, cliques have formed around me, and relationships have gone separate ways. Early in the year, I had chosen my friend group, which included nine girls.
Just as Bobby wandered through the library without being noticed, I walked down the school halls one day feeling invisible. Three of my friends were walking in front of me but didn't even bother to let me walk with them. I followed them around like a lost puppy, tried to get into the conversation, but was ignored. When I asked what they were talking about, they would reply, "Long story." They never told tell me about it and acted like they didn't care. I realized that secrets don't make friends and walked away. Experiences like these not only happen to me but to everyone walking through packed corridors in schools across the world.
Another example of feeling invisible occurred when we had our school dance. We all met up at the dance, but as soon as the music started to blare and the disco lights began to sparkle, everyone split up. When I went to find my friends, I realized that all of them were following the "ring leader" of our group around the room of whirling bodies. They acted like she was the best thing in the world and wanted to be with her every minute. I never could understand what made her so much more special than everyone else, but I knew that deep down, it didn't matter what others thought about me. I ended up dancing with one of my closer friends for the entire night.
One of the most challenging experiences for me was running cross country. You might think that running was the difficult part, but the other girls proved to be the challenge. I had signed up for the sport all alone and knew that none of my close friends would be involved. I spent the two months of the season trying to be friendly, make new friends, and be outgoing. Even though I am a kind person, none of the other girls ever glanced my way. When I would ask a question or think of something to say, they would never respond. At first I thought they couldn't hear me, but I soon realized that they heard me
and just didn't acknowledge a word I said. During our mileage runs for practice, I would run silently beside them and not be spoken to once. Also, on our bus rides to the meets, I would always sit on the seat by myself. Nobody ever wanted to sit next to me. I felt terrible, awkward, like a dork. I would spend the bus ride staring out the window daydreaming, making it look like I didn't care. Throughout the entire cross country season, I felt like an invisible ghost.
Although life is full of drama and days when I feel invisible, I always know that tomorrow is a new day. If I ever have a bad day, I know that my family is always there to encourage me just like Bobby had the support of his parents to solve his "invisible" problem. My mom is my true best friend and forever will be. Her arms are open wide and ready to embrace me when I need it the most. Even though I'm not physically invisible, sometimes I feel like I am. I just have to stay strong and know that I am a good person deep inside.