The Revolving Door

The Revolving Door

Chapter 1

Metamorphosis

I am a revolving door. No, I'm not one of those fancy doors that you see in posh hotels, the ones that you stand in and walk around in a circle to open. I don't even live in a hotel. I live in an ordinary high school, and am part of both the academic world and the one the students run for when the bell rings. I, the portal between these two worlds, see everything. I know everything. After all, I've been here a while.
Every year, it's the same thing. Those yellow monsters that some people call "buses" creep up to me, spewing out students from its doors. Some of those students, tall and proud, confidently walk through me and purposefully enter the strange world that is called "school." Others, with maps and schedules clutched in their hands, nervously approach me. They, panicked, look around for familiar faces. When they find none, they take a deep breath. Gathering up courage, they, like so many first-years before them, enter the strange land that I am beckoning them towards.
It is odd, seeing these people. During their first weeks of high school, they are all the same. They timidly enter me, all afraid of the new world that they have recently been introduced to. They all are so small, not yet the teenagers that one would expect to find in a high school. They all wear the same nervous expressions, which they try (and fail) to hide with expressions of apathy and carelessness. They all carry the same huge backpacks that their mothers lovingly packed for them, all seeming to expect some sort of apocalypse in the near future. The first few times that they turn my handle and enter their school, they are all the same.
Some time after school starts, everything changes. I don't what causes it. Maybe the worlds that I border are just so different that opening and closing me a few times accustoms them to their new surroundings. Whatever the reason is, they change.
At first, it isn't so noticeable. I sense that the freshmen are more comfortable with their surroundings when they obliviously walk through me, laughing with their friends instead of suspiciously peering at the world behind me. Next, I notice that the students seem to be veering in different directions. Some will enter school with stacks of books in their arms, obviously going onto the academic route. Some will enter school with soccer cleats peeking out from their backpacks, ready for the after school practice with their new sports team. Others will walk through me with new piercings in their bodies, and hair colors that cannot possibly be natural. It is interesting to see the first-years embrace these changes, and become more and more different from the people they were in junior high.
I also notice students starting to drift away from the friends they had before they met me, the people who they drank juice and ate graham crackers with back in preschool. Instead, they are buddying up with the people who share their newly found interests, the people who have something in common with them. They start to discover the type of people they want to hang out with; more importantly, they discover who they really are.
It is very interesting, really. This metamorphosis happens year after year, yet it never fails to amaze me. Students arrive at this school, virtually carbon copies of each other. There is nothing distinguishable about any of them. After a short while, high school transforms them from little kids fresh out of junior high to the adults they will soon be.
I am more than just a door. I am more than that slab of wood that I am made out of, more than just the brass doorknob that students are required to turn in order to open me. I am a fly on the wall, so to speak, an acute observer of everything that goes on around me. But I am more than that, too.
I am the boundary between high school and the outside world. I am the only thing that lets students in and out of the place that will shape their lives forever. I am the force that lets them into this life-altering world, therefore I am the force that allows their transformation to begin. I am more than just a door. I am a revolving door. I let in a crowd of timid children, and, when they are ready to graduate, I let out adults.

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