"Every child deserves a champion: an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists they become the best they can possibly be."
Two teachers - I had two teachers that I think about nearly every day.
Today is May 3 - also known as "Teacher Appreciation Day". Do you think it's kind of funny that TDA comes at the end of a very long school year, but at the beginning of The Last Month -- when most of the teachers in this world really just want to buy stakes in liquor stores or become line cooks at Popeyes?
Mrs. Gerke - whom I've spoken about here before. And Mr. Dallas.
Mrs. Gerke came into my life when I was undoubtedly a holy hot mess. I was a new kid in a new school in a new state and, oh yea, my mom had breast cancer. She must have had thousands of kids walk through her doorway. Thousands. Yet when I found her on Facebook, she remembered me - my story. A girl that was with her for a year - and in her building for less than two.
Do you know how powerful that is for a girl that really has no real "home base"? After having moved so often because of my dad's job - it was like letting a breath out. Yes. Yeeeees. Someone saw me and remembered me and twenty five years later -- knows me still.
This woman made her classroom into a haunted house for Halloween, taught me how to spell Wednesday, how to sign, and maybe most importantly - how to teach. When I was considering what I wanted to do - there she was in my peripheral. Her curly, dark hair, her 90s glasses, and her hands wildly gesticulating in the middle of a story.
And Mr. Dallas.
Peppermint and cigarettes mixed with ironed short sleeved shirts and dry sarcasm. He was my high school English teacher. He carried a briefcase and had a thin mustache. His glasses slid down his nose while he graded papers, with his elbows close to his sides, and his pencil always slanted.
He taught Spanish to a bunch of errant farm kids, because, "This is something you'll use one day, Becky." He did pushups in the front of class because we said he couldn't, gave me an A on my senior research paper, and his voice full of gravel stroking over the words from The Scarlet Letter are moments that I will never, ever get over.
It was this man, and his, "Come on, Becky, do better," that just ... dared me.
And so I did.
It's Teacher Appreciation Day.
Which teacher are you most thankful for?
. About Moi .
I love, love, love flannel sheets and I am really passionate about lists on post it notes and most of the time I'm sad that no one else is as excited as I am about Diet Mountain Dew. I also adore run-on sentences.
He saw her before he saw
anything else in the room.
- F. Scott Fitzgerald
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