I am a semi-clingy person.
I have always depended on people older than me to make me feel wanted or whatever you want to call it. My best friend is 8 years older than me. One of my closest friends as a child (and still is) is 10 years older than me. When I was in middle school, I was that kid that everyone made fun of that loved to sit with the chaperone on field trips and talk. I just like talking to adults more, I guess, usually.
As a lowly 6th grader, I became really close to one of the girls that lives next door named Rachel. She's 2 years older than me and her brother is around the same age as my brother and sister and her sister was my "writing buddy" when I was in 1st grade and she was in 5th. (Writing Buddies is a program at East School where the 5th graders go to the 1st graders classroom once a month and help them write little stories with a common theme, like at Easter it was the Easter Bunny, at Christmas, Santa, and so on.) Here in Mt.Vernon, the middle school is for grades 6-8, so as Rachel was heading out of the middle school, I was coming in. She showed me the ropes of the middle school and helped me out my first year. A couple of years later, I was a freshman and she was a junior. Once again, she helped me get through the terrifying first year of high school and helped me to find my classes and told me about my teachers and so on. When I was a sophmore, she helped me with scheduling my college class for this year, because she has taken it, and for the college prep english class, which she has also taken. She left for Denison University today, but she told me yesterday that if I need any help with my classes, she's only an instant message, cell phone call, or text message away.
Today, one of the girls from church stopped by my house on her way to freshman orientation. Her name is Lori and I've known her for years. She brought her schedule and list of "Things to Know" that the school gave her at orientation. She asked me what her teachers were like, what she really needed to worry about, and what gym class was like. I pointed out the teachers that I knew and told her about the dreaded gym class and advised her to do her homework and she'd be fine. I told her that if she needed someone to sit with at lunch or before school, then to come find me and she could hang out with me and my friends. One of the other girls at church, Emily, is taking English 9 Honors, like I did. Instead of making her go out and by the study copy of Tale of Two Cities that you have to buy halfway through the year, I told her if they had the students buy it, that I had the book that she needed (with notes in it, as an added bonus.) and to come see me. I know I hated having to buy that stuff.
I'm hoping that by doing this, they may, in turn, find another lowly freshman in two years. And the cycle will continue.