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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Microstory 1043: Mollie

Thanks for doing this over the phone, Miss...what was your name again? Alma? I was still going to school when Viola died, but I had kind of totally checked out by then. I worked really hard in school, so that I could graduate a semester early, but what really gave me the edge was being homeschooled until freshman year. You see, it’s really hard to determine what kind of classes I’ve already theoretically passed, and where I need improvement. So when I finally started at public school, there were probably some credits that I hadn’t truly earned. I shouldn’t say probably. Possibly is a better word, because we don’t really know for sure. Don’t get the wrong idea, though. I got near-perfect grades for the years once I was coming here, and I was accepted into college fair and square. I will say this, though, I’m not sure I would have gotten in without Viola’s help. One subject I’ve always struggled in was math. The thing about homeschooling is that, just because you want to shelter your kids from the world, doesn’t mean you can provide them with the best learning environment. Sure, I had the advantage with a scientist mother, and economic historian father, but there were just some things I was missing. Don’t tell my parents I said that, though. I practically had to submit an application to them just to go to a real high school. Anyway, even with a literal genius trying to teach me mathematics, I can’t wrap my brain around it. I ended up resigning myself to the fact that I’ll never be the next Pythagoras, and for a couple years, I thought that was okay. But then for my junior year, I had the opportunity to take a more advanced class, or just play it safe, like I always had. Though Viola and I hadn’t spoken much, because I was hardly a member of society at the time, she urged me to take the harder class. I mean, she was heavily invested in my future, and I had no clue why. I also had no reason to actually follow her advice, because at the time, I was considering a career in social work. It wasn’t until my last semester that I realized that I was falling in love with psychology. In particular, I want to be on the research side of the field, which requires a not insignificant mathematical background. I might have been able to get by without those last two classes, but I would have been behind, and it probably gives me another advantage when I’m applying for grad school in a few years. I’m on track to graduating in just three years, and I owe it all to Viola, who got this close to offering me money to take her advice. Looking back, she had talked about it like something like this was going to happen, rather than her just wanting me to take risks, or something. How could she have known?

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