The Locker

By Joy Lynn Clark

December 30, 2021

Like I said before, the beginning of high school sucked. I spent the summer trapped in our tiny rental and I thought that all sorts of rumors are flying around about me. I don’t even know why. To make matters worse, I couldn’t seem to remember my locker combination and I started being late for class all the time.

Although many of my old friends from middle school were here now, I got a bunch of new ones. I went to heart but, all of the girls by my locker went to Parker. They were nice and started helping me open my locker.

Lunchtime was the same, all of the girls were from Parker. At this point, I just started building new relationships. It was strange though. I felt so new. I might as well moved here from out of town.

I am so frustrated about my locker. The bell is going to ring and I’m going to get another tardy. On the other hand if I don’t get my paper out of this locker I’m going to get a bad grade. Hell, this isn’t even my locker, I am going to fail.

A girl comes down the hall and sees me crying, I explained about my locker and she offers to help. She asked, “what’s the combination?”. I can’t remember. I start emptying out my backpack on the floor in the hallway. Finally I find that little strip of locker info. I handed over. She opens my locker. I grab my paper and runoff the class. My English class is far and this is going to take another five minutes. I am late.

I attempt to plan ahead the next day. I keep the strip of locker info in my pocket. The bell rings, according to my calculations if I keep US history in my locker along with algebra and I can carry the algebra workbook and music theory because these are lightweight and I must take my sneakers to PE and north building and my Spanish book crap . . . How do I get in this locker? I keep trying and trying but the thing just won’t open. I’m going to die. I will get a tardy again and I won’t have my homework in on time.

The girl comes down the hall again, “let me show you how to do a combination lock”. She shows me, we practice and I think that I’ve got this, of course, I feel like an idiot carrying on about my locker. This girl and I become friends and we start walking together to some buildings that we both share classes in. Plus, her locker is near mine and so we are seeing each other often.

In PE, the same story. I struggled with my locker. If I couldn’t get into that locker because my friends weren’t around, I would have to borrow a uniform. Sometimes the PE teacher would loan me one and sometimes I could borrow one from a classmate. Sometimes, I just missed PE and ended up on probation for Tardies and missed classes. I wasn’t trying to skip class and be late. I spent the entire year depending on others to help me with it. Inside I was so frustrated and I felt so stupid. I kept on getting in trouble with attendance too. This is a negative symptom of my disability, memory loss. Eventually I was hospitalized after this but, that will be another story.

About Post Author

Joy Clark is a writer, producer, vocalist, and publisher. Lexington, KY