Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Future Staring Straight into the Face of the Past

I couldn't help but get misty-eyed standing outside the door to my 6th grade class. This is where my whole outlook on life and the way I saw myself completely changed.

For five years before I entered this class and six years afterward I often heard that I was 'too loud', too boisterous, too disruptive, too talkative or always 'too something' that was never too good of a description.. In a nusthell I'd never amount to a 'hill o' beans' because I could not (Lord knows I tried) be quiet in class.

At eleven years old I never dreamed that walking through this door I would meet the lady that would open up my eyes to a whole new world. The world of writing.

No longer was I 'too loud, talktavie, disruptive'....instead I was 'creative, imaginative, entertaining.' Mrs Tittle not only laughed at my jokes but she insisted I write them down.  She encouraged my writing by supplying me with tablets and creative writing workbooks. I wanted so much to please her that I'd write for hours on end and hand my 'masterpiece' in to her. At Christmas she suggested I turn my Santa Claus story into a play for the class. 

Speaking of Christmas, she gave each of us a hand-made card with a written poem inside. Mine said, "Reading and writing are her favorite game, one day Kathie Bishop will be a famous name."

It was emotional to stand here after all these years. I wished it was possible to open that door and reveal to the 6th grade me the woman she'd become.  Just allow me to make eye contact, offer her a simple smile. Surely she would recognize herself in me and understand that there is a big, beautiful world out there that doesn't care that that she was the last one picked in kick-ball. A world ready to embrace her 'differentness', her 'uniqueness'.

 Instead, I walk away. And while I know it's only my imagination, I swear I can almost hear the class clapping - with Mrs. Tittle clapping the loudest - as the 'actors' in my Christmas play take their final bow.

When/What was YOUR defining moment? Did someone change your life in an extraordinary way? I'd love to hear about it.

Til next time,
Kathie (Bishop) Truitt


High Heeled Life said...

Fabulous post! There have been a few life changing moments in my life, But I think the one that has had the greatest impact ... is how the Mr.'s first wife's mother and family has embraced me into their home - their lives, with open arms, love and true caring. (You may have read in my posts that she had a fatal car crash). Through her family I'm learning unconditional love and caring for others.

Wishing you a fabulous day...xo HHL


Thanks for this post. It touched my heart in many ways, reminding me of myself in grade school. Of being too loud, too talkative, too everything just as you said. Like you, I found my outlet in words. Lovely beautiful musical words.
No one led the way but many pointed it out.
Someday I'll write it all down. Just not yet. It isn't time.
Blessings, Barb
from WV - living in Ohio

trash talk said...

I wonder if teachers really get the full import of the impact they have on their young chargees.
For me, it was my Sophomore English teacher, Mrs. Ball. I've always had a passion for reading, but Mrs. Ball (fresh out of college) had the imagination and gumption to change the rules just a bit. Rather than using the same, sad required reading, she had us search out our own choices for tasks. Because I got to choose, I still can recite Jabberwocky and Eldorado by heart.
Because I got to choose, I've read all of Shakespear's plays.
Because I got to choose, I know more about F. Scott Fitzgerald than even Zelda.
Because of I got to world was opened to more than Beowolf and David Copperfield.
Because I got to choose, I chose Mrs. Ball's way of of other's choices.

Bethany said...

I'm misty eyed after reading this post. So often today, teachers are criticized and disrespected, but I plug away with my students, knowing that if I even reach just a few of them, that it is all worth it. Your story is a beautiful one. I remember the best teachers in my life to this day.

Anonymous said...

For me, it was the first comment you ever wrote on my blog: "I’ve been reading post after post after post. YOU are a great writer. I can’t wait to read more. If that’s okay I’m going to add you to my blog roll." I had SO many doubts about writing ANYthing and that alone gave me the boost I needed to keep going. I still have trouble writing, only because it can be time consuming and I have so much going on in my life right now. I was very talkative in class too and called out for it by many of my teachers. Didn't stop me then and I realize now there must have been a reason for God to make me such a motor mouth. Whenever I feel like nobody will care if I write another blog post or that no one will be interested if I publish a book, I think back to that first comment you made and it gives me the kick in the pants I need to keep on keepin' on. If one writes from the heart and believes in what is written, then the possibilities in life are endless. So I thank you for this very special post Kathie. You're an amazing lady and I love you dearly. :)

Anonymous said...

p.s. I'm not anonymous but apparently, I'm not smart enough to remember to add my name. lol

Random Musings Lady