Memoirs of an Addict Pt. VIII

During my second go at 2nd grade, I remember losing interest in things.  Generally speaking, this should be a happy time of self-realization and personal development.  Pudgy little seven years old me was pissed off at the world for making me endure the shame of being held back.  For good and for bad, mostly to my detriment, I’ve always had an ironclad stubbornness to me. I made the conscious decision to not make any friends in my new class.  I rationalized this as a protest against The Man (teachers, my parents) the powers that be responsible for making me retake a grade when, in reality, I was just a little boy afraid of entering a new environment.
From 2nd till 4th grade I can say I did not have a single friend outside of my old mates who I no longer saw on a regular basis.  I became woefully insecure, frequently suffering panic attacks, but never had the appropriate words to express the suffering. I was well on my way to morbid childhood obesity eating away my sorrows and social awkwardness.  This could have been a faze. I consider myself a relatively intelligent individual and, if left to my own ineptitude maybe I would have grown comfortable with myself and figured it out. Therapy might have helped. On the other hand, I was on the fast track to diabetes and heart disease.  In any event, two years of self-imposed isolation ended with my mom intervening, contacting the mother of a schoolmate of mine, Andrew Brzeczkiewicz, to schedule a playdate. Andy B and I quickly became best mates and would remain close throughout high school. The two of us were inseparable during the early years of friendship.  Although we came from very different families, we had similar interests. In hindsight, it would be more appropriate to say my interests shifted from all-out consumption to a shared interest in hobbies and pastimes with that of my new found friend. My father, in his quest to be the favorite parent, knew no limits when it came to providing materialistic goodies.  Fourth grade marked the shift in the manifestation of my addiction from eating to video games.

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