If you have not read this first part, I would suggest doing so first. Or you will not have the back story.
‘Okay.’ So you are probably saying to yourself, “College? What happened to the Monatana High School?” Which is my bad. As soon as Jerry and I got to the school it was non-stop.
I am surprised I was able to get a B avaerge those two years, because of all the swimming I did. I had morning practice everyday, plus an afternoon weight lifting session every other day, and afternoon practices everyday. So please cut me some slack for not finding time to write down my thoughts.
I have a moment now; it is currently summer “vacation” before college. Not really a vacation, but before I start this new chapter of college life I will recap some of the highlights.
Where to start…Well I guess the team line up for highschool was interesting; there were two familar faces and quite a few new ones. There were about thirty swimmers total on the team. The familar ones were Timothy and Jeremy.
‘Believe me, it was a strange realization for me as well.’ Which when I saw Jermey, that first day on the pool deck, I thought I was seeing things. Jerry made sure to keep us at a distance. Which really didn’t make a difference because the A relay became: Me, Timothy, Jeremy, and a new guy named Antonio. Antonio was the breaststroker. But this layout for the relay meant Jeremy and I had to move past our differences from the get go, to succeed.
Which we did. The A Relay placed first at every meet; we were unstoppable. Coach Jones was amazing. He devoloped my straight arm freestyle into a force to be reckoned with. I wasn’t always swimming the one hundred freestyle, but when I did I dominated the pool.
Jerry was the top swimmer for the B relay and he kicked butt when he swam the five hundred. He did amazing for not wanting to continue.
‘Yeah. Jerry did not want to continue to swim after high school.’ Which I can’t blame him. When we left that airport two years ago, we had these grand ideas about traveling often and seeing family. However, we visted home…maybe…three times; we were expected to swim through the summer vacations. We visted for Christmas, Coach’s wedding, and another occasion.
‘Right!’ That’s another big thing. Coach got married to Mrs. Bailey. I guess all the babysitting turned into the three of them going on outings, and that must have caused them to find their own happiness. ‘I am so happy for Coach and Mrs. Bailey, now known as Mrs. Brown. Which yes, means Jenny’s name is now Jenny Bailey Brown.’ She wanted to keep her dad’s name with her.
‘But back to Jerry’s dilemma.’ Jerry didn’t get to see his family pretty much for two years. He wanted to go home, even though he was invited to go to Bozeman University. Which I was shocked, but Jerry’s explanation was what I expected…
“George, I’m not going to College with you guys. I’m going to go back home and go to a school closer to home. I…I…miss,” Jerry was getting caught on the words.
I understood him. “No worries dude,” I walked up and swung my arm over his shoulders, “I totally understand that you miss your family. Believe me, I do too; but since Dad has been busy with my new stepmom, I have no urgent need to head home. You do you. I will be up here another four years, and I’ll come visit when I can.”
‘I know all of you reading stopped on that word, stepmom.’ Well yeah. I got a stepmom. Drum roll please…it is Ms. Chaplen; my homeroom teacher. Well I guess now she is Mrs. Matthews. I found out when Dad drove my jeep up to me. He told me he was coming up with a surprise. I was expecting something small, but instead it was Ms. Chaplen in the passenger seat. It was an awkward meeting at first, but once I got to know Ms. Chap…I mean Mom. ‘I call her mom; it’s easier.’ But yeah, once I got to know her, outside
of the classroom she was the perfect match for my dad. They told me how they met; it was actually all thanks to Coach. He set my dad up on a blind date with Ms. Chaplen, at the time, and they hit it off. ‘Yeah, he married someone who knew who he was, but Ms. Chap…Mom is still a great match.’ That was the other time I traveled down. I was my dad’s best man, so they choose their wedding date with me in mind. It was a special occasion.
Everyone was there. Dad’s music buddies, Coach’s family, my friends and their parents, various people we knew from church and town, and Jenny. Which I know she is included in Coach’s family, but that day she was in her own category. She was stunning; she was my now mom’s Maid of Honor. It was nice to see her again on such a happy occasion. That day I had all my family around me; now that Coach was Jenny’s stepdad, that meant my family circle was growing. Lily had been the flower girl; she was about half a foot taller
since Coach’s wedding. She told me that she would marry me in the future… I don’t know how I will break the news to her.
‘No. I don’t have someone in my life, yet.’ First off, I was still in high school about a month ago, but also I am doing what I said I would; I am focusing on my swimming career. I don’t know what college will bring, but I will be staying focused on what matters.
Speaking of swimming. Four other lucky people are joining me at Bozeman University next year: Timothy, Jeremy, James, and Liam. ‘Yeah, Jeremy made it.’ But honestly
Jeremy has changed over the last two years. Yeah at first we were at each other’s throats, but once we got over ourselves…meaning Coach Jones made us swim together for about four-thousand yards; it was brutal, but we moved past our differences. Also after that practice, Jeremy apologized about the Jenny thing. What were his exact words…
“I was a complete jerk that day. I had just gotten an earful from my dad and my coach that I desperately wanted to push my embarresment onto someone else. I had heard about the rumors, and it just came out of my mouth before I could think. But since I was with my buds, I couldn’t take it back and I had to act the part. I am sorry.”
‘I was surprised too.’ After that day we talked more. I found out about Jeremy’s dad; ‘His dad is a real piece of work.’ On the bright side, Jermey’s mom divorced him before things got too bad.
That was another day, that showed me what Jermey was going through. That day; It was about two in the morning when Jeremy’s phone went off. By the second year of school, Jeremy became my roommate. But I remember slowly waking up to a panicked looking Jeremy. He was talking quietly; probably for my sake. I sat up and turned the light on; Jeremy seemed to jump out of his skin.
“Sorry dude. Don’t worry about me and speak normal,” I grabbed my headphones and showed him I turned on music. His body relaxed and he talked a little louder. I turned up the volume and closed my eyes; letting Jeremy do what he needed.
“Geroge? George,” Jeremy was shaking me.
I open my eyes suddenly and sat up. There stood Jeremy, phone in hand. “All things good?”
“Yeah. Thanks. It would have been impossible to calm my mom down whispering to her,” Jeremy walked back to his bed and sat.
“Is your mom okay, now?” I asked not wanting to pry into his business, but it seemed like he wanted to discuss it.
“Yeah. She had an incident with my dad. She is safe,” Jeremy looked down at his hands.
“If you want to discuss it I will listen, but if not you don’t, don’t worry about me talking,” I say leaning foward in his direction. Hoping my sincerity came across.
“Thanks dude,” Jermey sighed.
I thought that was the end of it, but Jeremy’s posture changed. He seemed ridgid but also relaxed.
“My dad has always been verablly abusive to me and my mom. He was always angry. I almost didn’t come to this school because I didn’t want to leave her alone with him. But that call just comfirmed my fear; he tried to…” He didn’t continue but looked me in the eye.
I understood. His dad tried, but did not succeed. I nodded.
“Well, she called to tell me. She was in the police station at the time; she was hysterical. Thanks again for letting me talk normal. I don’t know if you heard any of it, but I was just trying to calm her, and tell her she did the right thing. My parents will be getting a divorce thankfully, and I don’t know if my dad will do jail time. I know you probably don’t really want to hear this, but it is helping a lot to talk it out.”
It seemed like Jeremy was done. He also looked nervous.
“I didn’t hear any of it. I had music going; I was giving you the freedom to talk as you needed. I don’t totally understand your family’s situation, but my parents are divorced too. My mom…well my biological mom was crazy. Just like your parents, it is good that my biological parents are no longer together. But thankfully my dad just got remarried, and my new mom is awesome.”
His head lifted, “Thanks dude. I never thought you and I would have a heart to heart,” Jeremy chuckled.
I chuckled as well, “I know. It’s a little weird, but it’s good to know more about my roommate. But can we go to sleep now. Practice is in about one hour and I could use more sleep,” I laid back down in bed and turned off the light.
“I guess.” Jeremy had no other option.
‘But back to the present.’ So yeah, I have gained a new buddy and he will coming with me to Bozeman University. It is going to be an interesting four years. Speaking of,
practice is in about thirty minutes. I’ve got to get ready and head out. It might be the weekend, but there is no such thing as a day off in the daily life of a swimmer.