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Interview with Stacy Shields

Shields, Stacy
Mullins, Kim
Date of Interview: 
Overcoming Obstacles; Relationships with People and Places; Then and Now; Tolerance and Respect
Stacy Shields shares her experience with coping with her father's death and making adjustments in her life after her mother's remarriage
Charlotte Narrative and Conversation Collection
Collection Description: 
Kim Mullins interviews Charlotteans to collect stories for a class project at UNC Charlotte.
Interview Audio: 
KM (Kim Mullins): OK. Have you lived in Charlotte your whole life?
SS (Stacy Shields): Yes, I have.
KM: Is there anything you want to talk about in relate, relating to Charlotte or any particular stories you would like to share?
SS: Um, well, when I was about 15 I had to move from one part of Charlotte to another and it was a very hard experience for me because, um, my mother had, was remarried, um, because my father had died a few years prior to this. So, um, my family life was already kind of disrupted, so being pulled away from all my friends, um, really tore part of my life up because I was leaving, you know, the best group of friends that I'd even known and I'd grown up with them from like elementary school to high school. And, um, so I was really upset. I was angry with my mom. We didn't speak. She sent me to like a frigging shrink to, um, help maybe, you know, sort through my emotions or whatever.
SS: Um, so, uh, but what, but actually, my move was probably one of the best things that ever happened to me, oddly enough, um, [cough] because when I moved, um, I met like, you know, close friends that, actually, now I go to college with and who I was a roommate with for a year or so. Um, so even though it was kind of a scary experience being uprooted from everything you knew, um, it gave me the chance to see that change is good and that, um, seeing a different part of, you know, just different parts of the same town, it's still very beneficial because it gave me the chance to realize how to adapt to different situations, into a different environment, relatively quickly. Um, because I ended up making a lot of good friends and, um, really loving the part of town that I moved to and really adapting to, um, my community there, um, and getting involved. And actually, the friends that I made there are the ones I ended up going to college with and not the ones from my first high school.
KM: Right.
SS: So, um--.
KM: Do you feel it made it easier for you to adapt to college life because of the move?
SS: Definitely. Because I was already, in one sense, ready to for another change. Whereas a lot of my friends had never even been in a different situation, in a different group of friends from the ones they had known from elementary school. They couldn't imagine being uprooted and not seeing the same faces every day. Whereas I'd already had this type of thing in my life, so I was more, I think I was quicker to adapt to a different college surroundings.
KM: Uh-huh. Do you feel that it was hard being the new person in school? I mean were people really, did they I don't know how to put it.
SS: They didn't like me [laugh] at first 'cause I was the new girl and where, you know, most of the guys, if a new girl comes in, of course they're going to be friendly just because [laugh] it's new blood or whatever.
KM: Right.
SS: But the girls did not want to have anything to do with me, they're catty. It was like I was, you know, invading their territory or whatever. Um, so it really took them, probably, I'd say, at least three months before I'd actually consider them my friends because I'd have classes with, um, Stephanie, who is one of my good friends now, but she did not talk to me for the first three months. I mean, and she even admitted that she didn't like me because I was new. Even though I don't think it was because of anything I'd done because I had hardly said two words since I didn't know anybody, but, um, they were real coy towards me, you know. But it--.
KM: Why do you think that is? Why do you thing do you think that's just girls in general?
SS: Actually, I think it is most girls in general. It's just a natural thing if you, if you have certain guy friends that you become very possessive over and you see someone, whether it's their new girlfriend or their new best friend or whatever, comes in and takes up some of your time, I think it's just human nature to get jealous and to kind of put up a, you know, an offensive front to whoever the invader or the intruder is. So, I think I've probably done the some time in my life, so I don't have any hard feelings towards them.
KM: And you feel it was a good thing, overall, the whole experience of moving and being the new kid and--?
SS: Absolutely. I wouldn't trade that experience for the world because there are too many people that I know who are very sheltered from not only new experiences, from like new ideas and new situations, and so I think it's kind of a blessing that I had the chance to go through this in the kind of, um, be the new kid and see what it was like to be the outsider and to not be in the in crowd, you know. Because, I mean, I think a lot of people who have never been on the outside don't understand what it's like to be kind of the kid that's, you know, not Mr. Popularity, you know? Who doesn't have all the friends and who doesn't get all the attention, and so it was nice because, you know, in school, like, I had a good circle of friends I was always, you know, an athlete, or whatever, so, you know, I received the attention. But for those few months that I was the outsider, I really got to see what it was like, you know, to not be, you know, cool, or whatever.
KM: Uh-huh. Now I understand. Is there anything else you'd like to say or?
SS: Umm, other than it was a good experience, that's about it.
KM: Well thank you so very much for sharing your experience with us.
SS: You're very welcome.