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Day of Silence
My tired eyes shot open as I looked at the clock besides my bed. I realized I hadn't heard the alarm tat wakes me up to school every morning so I sprinted out of bed, nearly falling, and tried to get ready as quickly as I could. I woke my mother up and as soon as she got the car started, I ran out the house door with my back pack over my right shoulder, my over-sized softball bag over my left shoulder, a Special K Bar halfway in my mouth, and my shoes in my hand.
I threw the bags in the trunk and got in the passenger seat and put on my shoes. I finally looked in the mirror and realized what a mess my hair was, but there wasn't much I could do but put it in a bun. I got my late pass and was heading over to my English class when I saw a boy walking the opposite direction. He was in my French class. He had a necklace that consisted of a long piece of yarn attached to an index card that dangled with writing on it which I didn't have time to stop and read.
His girlfriend jokingly called him. He's not gay, but I still don't appreciate the use of the word.
I walked into my English class with the wonder of the necklace, her insult, and why had not said one word. I turned in my late pass to the teacher and sat in my desk, pounding knuckles with my best friend in the process, that was a perk of sitting next to him. Suddenly, the teacher started praising two of my classmates for taking of vow of silence for a day. Only then did I notice they were also wearing those necklaces.
"Today is the Day of Silence", my teacher said. It made me wonder ow much I had missed just for being forty minutes late to school.
"Two of your classmates have decided to silence themselves for a cause." Ooh, a cause! A little spark flew in me. "They are speaking out for gays, bisexuals, lesbians, and so forth by remaining silent." As she continued to explain, I started wondering if they had been chosen or if it was out of their own free will, and where could I get one of those necklaces because I sure as hell wanted to be part of it, I hoped it wasn't too late.
Before I knew it, class was dismissed. I walked over to these green tables next to the library as I often did during our break. As I was walking there though, I kept noticing more kids who had them, except most were no longer silent. What hypocrisy! I thought to myself, and continued walking. When I got to the tables, I chatted with my friends as I often did. The same group of people were always there. I had tried to forget about the Day of Silence because I was only going to be in school until eleven, at that time we had to drive down to Key West for a softball game.
It took me one thing alone to do what I did that day, the reason for my decision. The reason walked our direction with the silencer around his neck, the only reason I knew he was coming was because I so happened to be looking that direction because even his footsteps were silent. It's as though he were floating, I've never heard such beautiful silence. Ashamed to admit so, but I had forgotten that this "reason", this boy whom I love dearly, he himself was bisexual. I was already an open person, but now, seeing that this beautiful, floating silence was in my presence, then did I remember what I stood for, what I believed in.
I was determined to help this cause, not just for this boy, but for what he reminded me of without having to speak one word, my morals. I quickly ran over to one of the kids with this now seemingly sacred necklaces which most other had broken with their voices and headed me to the direction I now longed for. The woman in charge of such generous even pointed to where the silencers rested, I put one on, and thanked her in sign language. She replied with a smile, but that smile was filled with more gratitude than words could ever interpret. My, what a beautiful smile. I ran back to the tables for I still had leisure time to enjoy before classes commenced once again.
The boy flashed me a smile that radiated that he was proud of me. He followed such beautiful and strengthening smile with a pat on the head. My, how I enjoy pats on the head. He himself knew that and that was the reassurance that he was proud of me. I hugged him and then sat down. I found it enjoyable to observe the others. Some understood and let me be, others wanted to contribute to the cause as well, and then there were the few that wanted to get me to talk.
A friend of mine got such necklace to avoid speaking in a class. I found it ignorant, but it wasn't until she threw it on the ground and stepped on it while we were changing for softball that I just found it downright insulting. But the point of the necklace was to speak out wile remaining silent, so I went right on to being silent instead of lecturing for displeasing act. I merely looked at her disapprovingly and rested this sacred symbol on the bench of the locker room.
For the softball team, school ended at eleven AM, which is when I told my friend that I was supposedly going to voice myself once more. She was angered with me when I didn't, but then understood and even the coaches worried for my lack of speaking because they needed me on the field, but I would speak once more when we were on the field in Key West, now that promise wasn't a lie.
On our way down to Key West, we made a stop at Wendy's. My, was that something, I pointed to the pictures of what I wanted to eat and thankfully though, although everyone else seemed lost, my friend understood me just fine. My attention was directed to her anyways. One thing happened at Wendy's, however, that showed me, that proved to me that my silence would speak out. My silence screamed to a strange man who was in line behind my friend and I. Surely enough, he grabbed the index card which read "Day of Silence" in large letters, followed by the reason for my silence.
After he read such powerful words he reminded me that I was doing a good deed. I simply smiled and nodded. What I did that day wasn't simply spread awareness to a strange man, "I teach at a school, I'm going to talk to the school board about it so we can do this next year!" He said, sounding enthusiastic. And thankful that I had introduced the idea to him. I returned the gratitude with a thank you in sign language, though my talkative eyes had already thanked him a thousand times. The food was handed to my friend and I and we sat together and enjoyed our meal in complete muteness. Yet we fancied our meals and each other's company so much, you would've never thought that table of two never exchanged one word.
Back on the bus, we took turns doing homework and reading ahead for our English class. We eventually tired of the endless car ride and both took a nap for the final hour of the bus ride left. When we awoke once again we were at the field. As everyone stood up with their cat-like stretches and started getting their equipment and walking off the bus, I glanced at my necklace once more. I held it and thought about what I'd done, the surplus amount of time I had to think of things, the dedication I had put into a cause, and the fact that I had spread the word to an entirely different school. I looked at it once more and finally removed it with a sigh.
Silence speaks much louder than words, that's a lesson I'm glad I learned. I had never felt so powerful, nor had I even screamed as loud as I did without speaking a word. Stand up for what you believe in, but do like Gandhi in the process. No acts of violence are needed, no words need to be spoken. Your heart, your cause, your feelings, and emotions have a voice, and they shout louder than you ever could if you allow it. I looked at it for the last time and put my silencer in my bag.
"Wait up!" I called out to my friend, and I ran over to her with my softball equipment over my shoulder.
P.S. We lost the game.