Her school years had "ups" and "downs". Sometimes she struggled academically and socially. She wanted to have close friends and many times felt she didn't fit in.
Sometimes I thought that a bilingual education system was a burden for Mariana. However, she completed 7th.grade satisfactorily. She wanted a change, so after many discussions and considerations, we decided to enroll her in the international school I worked for. I remember how nervous she was the night before starting 8th.grade. She said she had "butterflies in her stomach". I reassured her that everything was going to be fine. "You'll love my school", I said. The next day, as I watched her climb the stairs of the building, I felt a knot in my stomach and tears rolled down my cheeks. It was her birthday and she invited 4 girls for pizza. I felt so proud of her! She loved her new school and made many friends that first year.
She discovered Science and Math and told me "Mom, things are starting to make sense". She loved Gordon, her British teacher. She loved theater and made the volleyball team. I can see her big smile when they played her former school and won! She also discovered love that very first year, but broke up because she wanted someone who would "knock her down her feet".
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