• Works of HeART Project

Never Too Late

Updated: Nov 18, 2019

By Andrea Petrie

Like any other fifth or sixth grader, I came to school to be with my peers. We hung out together

before school started, during recess, lunchtime and after school; plenty of time for bullying to take place. I attended Montrose Elementary School in Edmonton, Alberta, back in the sixties.

At every school, the 'new kid' shows up. At our school, her name was Susan. Susan had long, wavy, brown hair, a thin build and big brown eyes. Nothing about her appearance should have warranted bullying. However, she was quiet, shy and did not quite fit in. Unbeknownst to her, she had walked into a 'hornet's nest'. Susan was not included in any of our groups. She was treated like an outcast.

Our school's head bully thought Susan was weird and decided to make up a rumour that she had fleas. As the rumour spread, some of the kids wrote 'FP' (Flea Protection) on their hands. So whenever Susan walked by, they would hold up their hands to show they were 'immune'. Personally, I chose not to join in that way, but, admittedly, I was guilty of calling her weird.

Works of HeART Project made me think of this story and how Susan must have felt coming to school every day. I can only pray that, by writing this story, Susan may read and recognize it. I want her to know how truly sorry I am. I know it is a long shot that she might read this, but what I wouldn't give to meet her face to face and ask her for forgiveness. Our words really do matter.

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