Have you ever had a day when you wonder if you are making a difference in this world? I must admit, I have had many of those days and it doesn’t help that my 46th birthday is approaching… Oh wait… It might be 47th. 😳 HOWEVER, this week was a different story. My desk was covered with notes and flowers from sweet students, each of them with their own story to tell. I thought I would let you take a walk in my shoes, the shoes of an elementary music teacher, and experience the words that made a difference in my life this week. Here are my top five child sayings from my week as a teacher: Number 5: “Mrs. Launius, you smell like a cupcake!” Number 4: “My aunt’s armpit hairs are really long.” Okay, so this didn’t really impact me but it IS pretty funny!! Number 3: This week, teachers had their students write about their mothers. On this particular paper that I read, the student was to complete the sentence about their mother…..
My mom’s favorite thing to do is: LAY IN BED
My favorite thing that my mom cooks for me is: NOTHING
My mom’s favorite place to go is: BED
This. Breaks. My. Heart. Mothers, step up! Your child needs you. Get off of your phone and read a book to them or get up and take them to the park. Number 2: Me: “honey, why are you crying?” “Because I love my mommy and she had to go to jail last night.” I normally hate bus duty! Walking around in a loud cafeteria, at the end of the day with hundreds of kids (well, maybe not hundreds…. It just sounds like it!) is not exactly my first choice in how I want to end the day. On this day, however, I saw a little five-year-old child sobbing with her head down on the table. After hearing her story, I presumed that the realization of “I am getting on a bus to go home and my mommy won’t be there” had just set in. It’s hard to find the words to say to them when you have no idea of what they go through when they go home. Hugs seem to speak louder than words sometimes. Number 1: “Mrs. Launius, I brought you a flower but it broke.” As this sweet child looked up at me, I could see the disappointment on his face. He turned around and started to walk away without even handing me the “flower”. I called out to him, “wait a minute, I want that flower! AND I want a hug!” As he turned around, I could see his dejected face brighten into a sweet, smiling face. As I stood there, holding my stem, he turned and walked away. My friend Debbie, who teaches next to me and heard the whole conversation said, “just like that flower, these kids show up here everyday with their broken little lives and entrust us to accept them and take care of them.” Wow….. Just wow…. Statement of the week right there!!! If you only knew what this child has been through over the last year — tragedy, sadness, grief and heartbreak that, I dare to say, none of us have ever or will ever know — and at the tender age of 6 years old. Broken flowers….. Broken lives. I walked into my room and placed my stem in a place that I will continue to see it everyday. When I see it, I will pray: “Dear God, please forgive me for ever feeling sorry for myself.” “Dear God, forgive me for taking lightly the position you have placed me in to make a difference in the life of a child.” “Dear God, when I am questioning, help me to remember that…. Yes… yes I AM making a difference in this world.” —- maybe it’s only the life of one child, but wouldn’t that be enough?