The class I hated most in school was Gym. The Gym teacher never bothered explaining the rules of the games to me. So to compensate, I hung back a bit and observed the other kids playing and guessed at what was happening. I remember watching a game, which turned out to be indoor soccer, figured okay the game is to get the ball with my feet only and then kick it into the goal. So I joined the game, chased the ball, saw my chance and kicked the ball into the goal. I saw some classmates cheering and I felt good until another classmate came up to me and scowled, "Nice going idiot, you just scored in your own goal!"
Another game was Dodgeball which I never understood. All that ever happened was I'd just run out to the playing field and get hit by a ball. "You're OUT" everyone yells at me. "But I just got here!" I'd protest.
One of my most embarrassing childhood moments happened in Gym class. We're all required to go to the changing room and change into shorts and T-shirts. This particular day, for some reason, I was running late and I didn't want to upset the teacher and get into trouble. I just quickly changed and entered the Gym. I was re-strapping on my hearing aid (remember the big clunky bugger), and walking toward the gathered group. I glanced up to see my teacher having what looked like a Tourette's spasm. She's obviously yelling at me and flailing her arm back and forth in a shooing motion. I was confused until a classmate ran up to me laughing and plucked out the front of my shirt and I saw the pretty pink bow of my undershirt. I was horrified! I spun around and raced back to the changing room! After getting my T-shirt on and redoing my hearing aid, I sat on the bench a good while, contemplating whether I should go back out to the Gym or just return to the classroom and wait for Gym period to end. I finally decided to head back out to Gym because I felt that repercussions from the teacher would be worse than the humiliation from the classmates.
In the Deaf High School, I still hated Gym. Sure, the rules of the games were explained clearer this time, but the layout of the Gym didn't help my poor eyesight at all. Along the top edge of the walls on opposite sides was a row of windows. Anytime I had to look upward during an activity I was greeted by bright white glare that blocked my view. Any airborne thing, an incoming basketball, a spiked volleyball or a flying shuttlecock, I didn't see. So there's been countless team sports that ended in frustration, hatred and hurt. I vividly remember a volleyball game, I was up front against the net. The top line of the net was in direct line with the windows. I glimpsed the ball heading toward my direction, but I lost sight of it once I looked up at the top of the net to see if it was coming down on my side or their side. Sure enough, that ball bonked me right in the face! "Why didn't you get it!" A flurry of hands signed as my teammates protested. "The light was in my face" I tried vainly to explain, signing slowly. "It's cloudy out! It couldn't have been that bright!" One student signed. "It was right THERE stupid bitch" another student signed. For the rest of the game, the other team aimed all their shots towards me, and my own team aimed their serves directly at me.
So of course I was picked last for any kind of Gym activity after that. "Find a partner" the Gym teacher instructed. I'm the last one standing, until a classmate runs into the Gym late. "You're with Tracy" the teacher instructed which was followed by a protest. "Not HER" they'd wail. "Doesn't matter! GO!" the teacher snapped back. "Shit shit shit shit" they'd mouthed as they slowly walked towards me with a scorned look on their face. My heart sinks lower and lower as I desperately try to please them to no avail.
I learned a valuable lesson about bullies once after Gym class. It was in the changing room and I had to use the bathroom at the same time as two of the "regular" bullies. After I was done I plucked some toilet paper out of the "single serve" toilet paper dispenser that only lets you get one sheet at a time. At the same time I heard the familar noise of someone else plucking out some sheets too. When I exited the stall I was ganged up on by the girls. "You use too much toilet paper" one girl snarled at me while signing for the other girl. "What? I only took a few sheets" I blurted in defense. "No it wasn't! I heard a whole bunch!" she snapped back. "I don't need a bathroom monitor" I sarcasically said, pushed past them and went back to class. I finally learned it wasn't personal. They're going to find any excuse, rhyme or reason to bully me. From then on I didn't let it affect me anymore and soon the bullying tapered off and stopped as they were not getting the reactions anymore.