Somewhat nervous, somewhat excited, there are always mixed feelings when it comes to your first day of something. There’s something about beginnings that’s memorable. From the day you were born till you are all grown up you will be experiencing many memorable, awkward, funny beginnings. Do you remember your first day of school? First day on the job? Well, I’ve compiled my own experience on some of my most memorable first days.
First day at school
Congratulations, you are now officially at the bottom of the food chain! Whether it is your first day at a new school or even your first day at secondary school with a new campus, you are surely in for a ride. I always noticed that crying seemed to be a staple of one’s first day at school. We as kids are expected to cry, clutching a parent’s hand unable to let go, not knowing what is waiting for us. As a kid, adults expect you to cry, especially on your first day, and they are expected to comfort you. You will also never forget your very first teacher.
I remember walking into my new school, polished and dressed up in a uniform, lined up ready to meet my new teacher. School is where you first learn about law and order. It was frightening and I was crying my heart out but not for the obvious reasons. It was finding out my teacher was a man. All the other classes had female teachers and for the six-year-old I was, it was a nightmare. I was always used to my primary caregiver being a female, a mother, a grandmother, a babysitter…so why was this teacher…not?
I looked at the line, wasn’t just me crying, all of us were crying. Our teacher came up with a fun and creative solution. He put on a wig to comfort us. I still remember him dressed in a shirt and pants, with a blonde wig and a purse. Who knew that a man dressing up as a woman would make all those kids stop crying. He even tried to soften his voice to make us laugh. My teacher was able to challenge stigmas associated with gender roles in a funny and memorable manner, his action that day inspired and evoked true feelings.
First day at University
A lot older but not necessarily wiser, you embark upon your journey to university. Emotions are all over the place. For some, your first day at university is when you officially move out of your home and experience life outside the shadow of your family. Even those who stay with their families experience more responsibility and fewer restrictions.
Some call me an expert on first days because I have been to three different universities in three different countries. One time is surely enough, imagine having to go through your first day at university three times! On one of my first days, so eager to make friends and not yet able to say no to plans, I had lunch 4 times! Whenever I would meet someone new and they would ask me if I would like to go get lunch, I would go with them and that is how I ended up having lunch four times on the same day. Moral of the story, learn to say no sometimes, it’s okay even on your first day. You will eventually learn to manage your fear of missing out.
On another first day, I met one of my best friends, I walked into class, and immediately my reaction, “Is this person Egyptian?” radar started. Mind you, Egyptians can spot each other from miles away. We started talking and I found out that she is in fact Egyptian but for some unknown reason, we continued to talk to each other in English for the first few hours. This is now a memory we both look back on and laugh at. If I have learned one thing, it’s to trust your gut and follow your instinct. Sometimes you are drawn to strangers for a reason and those strangers turn to friends for life.
First Day at a new job
You’ve graduated college — congratulations! You are now ready to enter the professional world. First days on a job can be intimidating even if you have tons of experience. It is all about stepping outside of your comfort zone, making and learning from your mistakes and getting accustomed to the company’s culture, and maybe crying in the bathroom.
On my first day at the job, I walked into the building and mysteriously found everyone waiting downstairs at the entrance of the building. I thought to myself, isn’t it too soon for a welcome party. After exchanging a couple of blank stares, it turns out, everyone was locked out of the office. Although somewhat awkward at first, it was actually a great chance to meet everyone all at once, introduce myself, and have a little laugh. If you should take away one thing from this story, it’s when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. We all go through awkward or uncomfortable situations. Some of us think that we are jinxed or cursed and that bad thing always happens to us but you always have the chance to turn things around.
WE SAID THIS: We have all been there, which of these first-day incidents can you relate to?