Life Lessons


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All Gone

Mum and Dad split up when I was only seven years old. I didn't understand. At midnight one day, Mum and Dad started shouting, and then Nan came to take me to her house. Normally, I love going to Nan's; she gives me lots of cake and bowls of chocolate syrup. In fact, she feeds me so much sugar and fat that I had diarrhea for a week and kept vomiting for a month.

When I arrived at Nan's house, she hugged me tight, wrapped me up in my favourite bunny blanket and sat me on her lap. Cradling me gently, she fed me a slice of angel food cake and warm sugared milk. She kissed me tenderly and carried me upstairs into her bedroom. Snuggled up in Nan's warm, King-sized bed, I drifted off to sleep.

Eventually, around ten o'clock in the morning, Nan took me back home. But home wasn't home.

Mum was lying on the rug, her head in a pillow, sobbing her heart out. Sheena, my big sister (three years older than me), was sitting on the T.V. stand, her face white, her leg twisted horribly, her eyes red. She wasn't my Sheena.

The entire house was trashed - nothing was the same.

Desperately, I searched around for Dad - he'd make things right. He always did.

Nan wept silently, crouching on a step on the stairs.

I searched frantically, desperate to at least catch a whiff of Dad's rich cinammon scent.

But Dad was gone. My house was gone. My family was gone...

"When my dad divorced my mum, it was kind of like him leaving me also." 

- Nicole Richie (as told to Oprah)

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Donatella Jacobs

"Hey, Natasha!" hisses my cousin, Andie Powell. "Look - there's a new girl! Wonder who she is?"

I shrug.

Andie's always so curious, and her eyes are so large, they're basically her whole face. She's so inquisitive and can notice when Miss Darche simply uses a different shade of foundation! Despite this, I peer at this new girl. She's tall, slim and tanned. Her wasit-length hair is straight and chestnut brown; her eyes are perfect-sized and a greyish-blue. She is absolutely beautiful, and the school uniform fits her perfectly; a plain white blouse, lilac cardigan and a grey skirt or trousers (she is wearing a skirt, which is so short - someone has lifted a hem a lot). Even those I don't know her name, I immediately want to be her friend.

"Good morning class," Miss Darche says, holding the new girl's hand. "We have a new addition to Year 8ZD. Her name is Donatella Jacobs."

Donatella Jacobs...Donatella Jacobs...What a sweet name!

"Names are not important, It's what lies inside of you that matters."

- Sarah J Maas

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What's Inside

"Donatella's dad lost his job, and when he killed himself, Donatella and her mum moved to Kent. Now, Ms Jacobs has a job as a marine biologist. Now, you must be very kind to Donatella," Miss Darche continues, sending us all a nervous red-lipped smile, "because she has had such a hard life. Promise me, Year 8ZD."

"We promise!" the class choruses.

"Good. Now, Donatella, you may sit next to...ah! Natasha Powell, there is an empty space next to you. Natasha, raise your hand, darling."

Obediently, I raise my hand. Nodding slowly, Donatella slowly walks over to me.

"Sit next to Natasha. She's been through hard times as well, so..."

Both of us nod. We understand. We've been through it. The both of us.

"If two people follow the same energy, they're bound to end up in the same room together."

-  Joseph Matwick

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The New Girl

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Counsellor Liana Murray

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