It was a warm day in the summer as I was sitting with my friends at the park. We were all bored with nothing to do, and were simply joking with each other while enjoying the warm sunny day. We were talking about different topics like movies we had seen, video games we've played, and different things that have happened in school. My friend, Kevin, was the first to notice a figure on a bicycle approaching from the distance. Even though he was still far off we could make out the appearance of a boy we had known from our neighborhood. His name was John and he wasn't the most popular of kids. We all knew that he was tall and skinny, not very athletic, and had a nose that was slightly larger than you would expect for his physical appearance. My friends started to joke about him, and even though he was still far away they began to make jokes about his appearance. As I was caught up in the moment, and probably due to the fact that I was seeking acceptance from my friends, I too started to make jokes about John's appearance. Some of my friends started to hurl various nicknames and references towards John despite the fact that he was still too far away to hear our remarks. It did seem, however, that the closer John was coming, the more intense the voices of my friends became. I drew a deep breath into my lungs and was about to yell out a cruel joke about the size of John's nose before I caught myself. Something happened inside me at that moment. It was as if I immediately started to become nauseous. It was a feeling of shame and pain combined. I felt like a solid brick wall sullied with graffiti and markings that made me feel worn and shameful. I immediately knew where this was coming from. I immediately knew that I was wrong.
I remember being in the fourth grade when I first experienced this feeling. Having a mother of Egyptian descent, I was always apprehensive about letting others know that I was half Middle-Eastern.