In First Grade, I Moved to North Carolina

Mrs. Frazier welcomed with a big hug and more Southern hospitality in that first grin than I’d ever received in Ms. Silver’s class at Dogwood. They hated me because I started that year off in Kindergarten, but moved to first grade a couplle months later.

I had already taken kindergarten, but that’s a different story.

I miss North Carolina, sometimes. Every month I’ll be hit by the wave of missing, of what-ifs.

In Mrs. Frazier’s class, we had to read a book a night and take AR tests.

Every night I took home a Cam Jansen chapter book and read it out-loud to my mom and Dad. The Cam Jansen books were chapter books, around fifty pages each, about a fifth grader who solved mysteries around her small town using her photographic memory.

I loved Cam. I wanted to be like her, I wanted to be that smart, be the nice, have a friend like her best friend, and I wanted to have a photographic memory. In short, I wanted to be someone.

Because we had to read a book a night, my mom got frustrated with my constant decision to bring home a new Cam Jansen book. I remember her frustration boiling over once; she begged me to bring home a Franklin book instead of Cam one night.

If there’s one thing I’ve done as much as dream, it’s trying to not disappoint people.

So, I brought home Franklin for a while.

But I loved Cam and quickly returned to her.

Sometimes I think I dream too big, too much, too often. Sometimes I need to bring home a Franklin book, to relax. But I don’t need to be told to take Franklin home. Being forced leads to more Cam.

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