Being a youth (Jr. High age) is such an awkward part of our lives. Everything is taken literally and there is so much tragedy and devastation. Too young to be adults but yet too old to be considered children – or treated as such. Often being told to “act your age” when it’s so obvious that people that age have never been that age before and have no knowledge of how to act.
As adults we can literally look back upon all those "painful" memories and realize that what we thought was so important really isn't. I think if a person can make it through junior high, he or she has put behind the most awful part of their social lives behind them, and can move on to become actual human beings.
Recently I read the juvenile fiction The Strange Case of Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger - written from the students' point of view. I laughed so hard – not just at the words, but at the illustrations. But you really do have to be in the right frame of mind to enjoy it.
I tried to read it to Jenna, but there’s too much of it that she has yet to go through and just doesn’t understand my laughter at this time – and may not get it when she is that awkward stage of her life. I hope that I can help her overcome her struggles so that hopefully she can deal with the “pain” a lot better than I did. But then she has always been a lot more mature academically. Perhaps with my encouragement she will be socially, too.