OUT OF MY MIND BY SHARON M. DRAPER
The inclusion program has vastly altered Melody’s school career. It has allowed her to actually interact with the classmates that she has simply been observing for years. On the much greater, positive side, Melody has had the opportunity to befriend and meet other fifth graders. She has made friends and has even hung out with one outside of school. And while there are many positives, this program also gives ‘normal’ kids the opportunity to make fun of and bully Melody and the rest of class H-5. Molly and Claire were great examples of this. They would constantly berate and mock Melody simply because of a disability. Simply by the way that Melody reacted to being hugged by Rose and people just talking to her, it is made clear how Melody longs for friends and interaction. For me, friendship is defined by loyalty and trust. It is something I ensure is in all of my friends as trust is a big thing for me. Lastly, friendship is important. People can get lonely easily and it can do damage to their mental health. Having friends and people you can turn to is quite important to living a balanced life.