The Beginning- Mildred
It was our first day of kindergarten. I clutched my sister Angelica’s
hand, squeezing it tightly. She was gripping mine even harder. My sister
and I were not your typical four year olds. We believed that we had the
brains of a tenth grade kid – well, maybe not in book learning, but
life had taught us a lot.
All the kids were in the classroom with their parents. The students all
looked so weird. It was as if they had all met before today. They were
waving and smiling at each other and were shouting out to the others
what they had done with each other before they started school. The
parents and children stood in multiple small groups, laughing and
hugging each other. We were outcasts, standing there by ourselves in an
open space. To tell you the truth, this is what my sister Angelica and I
felt all the time at home. Our parents had simply just dropped us off at
the school gates this morning, lured us to the office by our hands and
bags, and then left without saying goodbye.
“Good morning, children and parents,” Miss Vlanet said. "Today, you
will start school, and you have to let your parents go."
The children began to cry as soon as Miss Vlanet finished. Other four
year olds ran to grab their parents as they tried to back out the
classroom door. Angelica and I just stood there. We were fine. We had
each other. And what could be so wrong about school? All of these kids
must have loved their parents a lot. But my sister and I were the exact
“Children, gather around, please,” Miss Vlanet said soon after the
children’s parents left. “We need to start.” We all sat in a
circle facing the teacher. I do this a lot when I am watching TV at home
with my sister.
“We will start by getting to know each other. Who would like to
begin?” she said.
Even though Miss Vlanet had a weird name that sounded ghastly, my first
impression of her was that she was an excellent person. She was tall and
had long, curly hair. A bit like mine, actually, but my hair was red.
Hers was blonde.
“Miss, I’m John and I like the toilet,” a dark-haired boy said,
sticking up his hand.
Miss Vlanet blinked. “How rude of you to say that. If you do that
again, you will go to the naughty corner.”
She pointed to a corner. There was a mat, surrounded by shelves with
books that were easy for us children to read. It didn’t look that bad
over there. I would love to read a book. I might be able to find out
more about my parents and why they do certain things.
“I’m Mildred and this is my twin sister, Angelica,” I said.
“Well, hello, Mildred and Angelica. Pleased to meet you.”
“You too, Miss,” I said.
The whole class had a chance to say something about themselves. Many of
the boys were naughty and childish. The girls were polite. It took a
long time for all the kids to introduce themselves. By the time it was
over, I knew who to make friends with and who not to. Not the boys:
I’m too calm for them. Most of the girls seemed fine; others had
significantly large problems. They were complaining about their looks
and what they should and shouldn’t eat for most of the time when Miss
Vlanet was trying to talk. Was I going to survive here? I didn’t like
when people talked about their looks and food habits. I wonder what
would happen if they compared their lives to mine?
Excerpted from "A Twin's Redemption" by Yassy F. Copyright © 2014 by Yassy F. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.