Aftermath – new girls’ rules 3
From the following week, I started to play with my hair – ponytail with a cute scrunchy, two braids, headbands. The fun of it released some tension of being 14 in an oppressive school system.
We weren’t best friends with the 3rd-grade girls, and I could see the grudge in the mean girl’s face. But what could she do? If she physically hurt us, that’d be HER problem.
School as an institution drove us to believe we were of little value and had to be disciplined so we could be of use in other institutions. The institution we had known to be our destination was home, in which women subdued to men. Older girls had been trapped in the only frame of reality presented to them, and all they could do was to put down younger women so they could feel powerful in the world where they were powerless, because if the younger women didn’t recognize and value their existence, who would? Izumi’s sister happened to create the opportunity for us to revolt, but she did so with her power to control the younger. Had she been in the 3rd-grade at the time, would she have supported the change?
Peace arrived in school nonetheless, and even after what happened, Yuko remained a kind sister to me. The progressive Saori was ecstatic when she heard about the downfall of the mean girl she loathed. The change in the air was palpable, but teachers pretended to be oblivious. They couldn’t do anything about the toxic girls’ rules, so the shame was on them for failing to teach us humanity.