Now that I’m a senior, I find myself looking back on the most awkward days of my life thus far. I know it sounds cliche, but these past years of my marvelous existence have gone by so fast. When I think of the ultimate awkward me, it is most definitely a close tie between the brace-face, what-are-boys (?) seventh grader and the tiny, polite, smeared-eyeliner/sparkly-lipgloss wearing ninth grader. Considering my experiences from each year, I chose ninth grade. Like being in middle school, you have to start at the bottom of the food chain again, only this time at any given moment you could turn the corner and walk into someone with a beard (and this time it will not be your social studies teacher). Being the awkward Avery that I am, I’ve had one too many moments of sheer mortification during my first year of high school or, freshman moments, as we like to call them. One freshman moment was like the end-all-be-all because anything that could go wrong freshman year could be held against you for the next four years of your life (and I am living proof that these moments of freshman distress will be brought up senior year). I have had way too many of these instances during my high school career because let’s be honest, freshman moments can even happen as a senior if you’re anything like me. Picture the first week of high school ever- scary for some, I know. Picture the inevitable “Hey Becky how was your summer?” type conversations, even though we would rather not hear about Becky’s 2 week family trip to The Amalfi Coast while we were at home counting how many grapes we could shove in our mouth. Picture little gawky me wearing whatever the heck I thought was fashionable at the time, tip-toeing around the hallways of my new school. I was so excited to see how brand new everything was and for once, how my high school didn’t make me profusely sweat because we had air conditioning which was like, the greatest thing to happen since Blackberry Messenger. Anyways, I’m sitting in math class, fiddling with my new school supplies, and I realize I have to pee. YES! BATHROOMS THAT DON’T HAVE MOLD! We are totally living in the fast lane right now. I fill out my passbook and of course have zero clue where I’m going. I see a bathroom labeled “Women” and at this point I’m thinking how incredible it is to be called a woman and not a girl. High school really is a prestigious place. Then, I notice a key pad under the door handle and realize I was unaware of the code to use the bathroom. Keypads? Are we sure we’re enrolled in public schooling? Wow this was fancy. How did we get all the way to seventh period to realize this Avery?! I scurry back to my math classroom, peak my head in and politely joke to my teacher that I totally forgot to ask her what the code to the bathroom was (because I knew there was one in the first place, right?) She starts laughing. The class starts laughing. Didn’t know I cracked a joke and even if I did, people do not usually laugh. Did I spill yogurt on my shirt at lunch? Is there something green in my teeth? “Oh, no, those are the teacher bathrooms! Keep walking past them and you’ll see the student bathrooms once you turn the corner”, my teacher alludes whilst giggling. Well, I could’ve just curled up in a ball right there and died of embarrassment. But I still had to pee. “Oh, right, thanks!” I say as my tomato-red face peeps back out into the hallway and shuts the door. I finally find the student bathrooms and realize that, indeed, it does still say “Girls”. Fabulous, just fabulous. To this day, I am still reminded of the ever-so-uncomfortable freshman moments. Suburban public high schools are so not like PCA from Zoey 101 (who would’ve thought?) Maybe college?