Someone Had To….

I was coming up blank for a post tonight so I went over to one of my new favorite sites Mama Kat’s writing workshop to find a fun writing prompt. I cycled through about eight different topics when I came upon:Describe a time you spoke up for someone who couldn’t speak up for themselves, and I instantly knew what I was going to write, so we begin.
   My story brings us back to 7th grade which would have been 1995 (roughly). I was a very wild, unruly teenager back then. I was mad at the world and I could do anything I wanted because NO one was the boss of me! I knew it all! I had a great group of friends, I had a boyfriend, I had horrible grades, I had a mouth a sailor would be ashamed of, I had a major issue with authority and my Father had no control over me which got me into a lot of trouble! I was a girl with many faces. I fit in with every social group. I was athletic and good at sports so I got along with the sports/jock group, I was wild & unruly so I got along with the trouble makers, I was smart in certain subjects so I was able to get along with the nerds & brains, I grew up with a few of the super geeks that played weird games, sometimes still behaved like 3rd graders and knew how to play chess, mind you, I did too ssshhhh don’t tell, not many people know that about me. I also fit in with the popular kids and the preps. So unlike most teenage girls nowadays, I certainly didn’t feel alone, I had friends everywhere, I got along with everyone and I never felt lonely. Although it sucked I was always in trouble, it really was a fun time back then.
  There was one area in my life back then that I hated! Though I had this tough, badass exterior, I was a softy when it came to certain things, People that had needs. Whether it was the boy who had a mild case of down syndrome or the boy in the wheel chair who had muscular dystrophy, the girl who had personality disorder and you never knew which you were talking to or what their mood was that instant. I felt the need to help them, protect them, be the friend no one else would be, and most importantly back them up when adults, teachers, police, counselors, people in authority didn’t understand them. I was teased by some of my friends for associating with them, for talking to them in the hallways and during class, but I really didn’t give a shit. If you wanted to tease me about it, whatever, I didn’t need your friendship, I had plenty more in the school and if you wanted to behave and act like an idiot and be mean to someone who had no control over their situation then you weren’t worth my time.
   One instance got me into a lot of trouble. It was 2 weeks before summer vacation. We were in class and the class had split up into small groups. Four of us were at separate desks so we could finish up our test, I’m not sure if it was a state test or a regular test but a few of us were finishing up. A girl named *Reba was 3 desks away from away from me and she was starting to get agitated by all the noise and laughter around us. I knew Reba. She was a volatile person. As long as she was in her element and she felt safe she was fine, she was funny, she had a huge heart. Thinking back, I am sure she had autism, anxiety and depression. When things were loud or out of order she would lose control, she would yell, lash out, pull her hair, cry, kick, punch, swear, run away. It broke my heart to see her so upset. It really bugged me. I put my pencil down and went to the front of the room asked the teacher if us kids working on our test could finish our tests in a different room, some place quiet. He said absolutely and we were moved next door. I knew the teacher. She was in the room along with 3 other students, she was at her desk working on something and the other students must have been testing too, because they were spread out and it was completely quiet. This was much better. I knew Reba would be better and she would calm down. Everything was quiet and normal for about 20 minutes. Then the Principal, Vice Principal and school counselor came into the room and started talking to one of the male students. I was eavesdropping, apparently he had been caught smoking and when they searched his locker they found something he wasn’t supposed to have, not sure what now, but things started to get heated, he was yelling and swearing, the principal was throwing racial slurs at him and then BANG! oh Shit *Reba, I had forgotten about Reba.I whipped my head around to see Reba way to far into a fit to pull her out, it was time to control the situation. The group of asshole staff started towards her, they were mad and things were going to be ugly. I happened to be in the middle, I instinctively stood up and told them to turn around and leave her alone. Suddenly Reba screamed, “SHUT THE FUCK UP” oh crap this is worse than I thought and her assistant is nowhere in sight, damn, bad timing for her to take a break, she was the only one this team of 3 are going to listen to. I told them to lower their voices, take the boy out of the room and she would calm down, she’s trying to take a test and she’s getting upset. They clearly did not understand her and what her issues were. I had to protect her.

They clearly had no idea this was out of her control. The vice principal reached around me and grabbed her arm, bad move, she lost control, she started throwing punches left and right, she was crying hysterically the whole scene was messed up. I shoved the group of 3 backwards and told them “leave her the fuck alone, you don’t understand, it’s not her fault, she just needs some space, leave her alone, fuck off” I was dragged out of the room while Reba was tackled and restrained by school staff as reba’s mental health assistant flew by me screaming for them to stop and call the nurse, they were breaking her plan. An hour later I was riding home with my Grandpa and starting my summer vacation early being I was expelled for the rest of the year and was not welcome back on school property and charges may be pending.

   I switched schools in the fall and never did see Reba again. I have no idea how things turned out for her. Looking back now, I know it was wrong, I technically should have minded my own business, but I couldn’t, and I know now, I still would do the same thing. They didn’t understand that she was having an episode and if they would have shut up and left the room, she would have calmed down and worked through her emotions by rocking and twitching her head. It saddens me that she was treated that way. I wonder if she is more understood today? I wonder if people still treat her that way? I wonder if she recognized what I was trying to do to help her, did she appreciate it, or was she too far into her psychosis at that point that it was a blur? I wish I could have an opportunity to see Reba today.
   So thank you Mama Kat for reminding me of Reba. Thank you for reminding me of a time I was in serious trouble, for a good cause!
*Name changed for privacy
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About Miranda Sherman

Miranda Sherman is a stay at home Mom of four & full time student majoring in Business Management & Marketing from Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. She blogs about her crazy family of six & two dogs on her blog Minnesota Miranda, featuring book and product reviews, giveaways, news, parenting tips and advice, shopping, recipes, fashion, travel, deals and so much more.” Find me on Google+


  1. Right or wrong, you did what your heart told you to do…so that makes it the right thing. Clearly, the staff didn’t have the training, and couldn’t have bought a “clue” about Reba. Someone had to protect her. Her assistant should have been there, but it’s good that you were.

  2. How kind-hearted of you to stick up for her! It was a great story. Thanks for stopping by the S&R weekend hop this weekend. Have a good week next week!

  3. Great that you stuck up and spoke up.

  4. What a great story! I’ve always had a soft spot for disabled and special needs kids, too. Probably because I barely managed to stay out of the special class myself, but I totally would have done the same thing!

  5. Great share…and you did right, IMHO~!! I remember waaay back in grade 8, I was coming into the school yard, when these grade 8 boys had a grade 6 cornered into the wall, I could hear the little guy crying, so I went to investigate, okay, that child, John, was a little slow, looked like a kid version of quasi modo…hunchback, squinty eye, wrecked teeth and all, that REALLY pissed me off, so I started throwing those three of the four boys off of “John”…the last boy, he challenged me but now, I’m pumping on adrenaline and my need to right a wrong, the teachers ended up pulling me off the kid, I was smashing his face into the steel grates covering the windows…I didn’t realize, I took my suspension with pride…of those boys…THREE of them “grew up” to be cops…can you imagine??
    I’m your newest GFC follower *heavensent1*…please stop on by ifn you have but a moment ~ Mad Moose Mama ~ ~ Have a groovy day&#8230

  6. Thanks for linking up for Footloose and Fancy Free:) Following you back. Great post!

  7. Hey, Following you from weekend wind down.

  8. I am already a follower but coming in to say hi from Weekend Winddown–I too always seemed to stick up for the under dog and totally understand why you did what you did–as far as I am concerned the orincipal should have been kicked out for suspending you!!
    Michele aka MikiHope

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