teacher

‘Step right up!’ my teacher said. I half shook my head no, turning pink. I slowly rose, my legs glued together. The floodgates opened. I was 5 feet from the board when someone shouted, ‘OH MY GOD!’

“Queue the tears. Oh, those embarrassing tears. I was mortified. I’d never been given the period talk. My parents were too uncomfortable to explain. And to make matters worse… you guessed it. I was wearing white jeans. WHITE. I never expected what would happen next. Not in a million years.”

‘I was cussed out by parents who wanted to attend field trips but missed the THREE notes that went home. When they did attend a trip, they sat on their phone the entire time. The filter comes off now.’

“I’ve had parents tell me I’m not allowed to tell their child ‘no.’ Watching them come in… dirty clothes… chaos at home… and knowing they need more than you can give them in a classroom of 21, with less and less support, multiple languages spoken, several different disabilities… it breaks you.”

‘If I drink beer, maybe they’ll like me.’ ‘Maybe if I smoke this.’ Their words cut deep. I was desperate for acceptance. When it wasn’t enough, I stopped going to class and flunked with all F’s.’

“I thought the bullying would stop when my mom died of cancer, but it returned full force. I remember being yanked off my feet by my ponytail, blood running down my leg. I still wasn’t good enough, so I dropped out. When I returned to school at 31, a mother of 3 kids, I thought the same failure awaited me again. I was absolutely terrified.”

‘They are ours forever,’ I told my husband as tears ran down my face. ‘We have twins. They’ve been moved due to limited beds.’ I read that text a million times. Our day had finally come.’

“I told my student I had to talk to his dad about his behavior. He turned around. ‘He is not my dad, he is my case worker. I don’t have a mom or dad. I am in foster care.’ I was shocked and speechless. I wanted to wrap my arms around him. During dinner, I had a conversation with my husband.”

‘Zane got a call from a fellow soldier. He knew a young woman who was expecting a baby. She wanted a loving family for him. ‘We might be getting a baby!’ I was stunned, ecstatic, and terrified.’

“The day finally arrived. The doctor opened the door, popped his head in and said, ‘How about Monday?’ I glanced over to see her expression. ‘Sounds good!’ On the inside I was doing a full-blown happy dance. My thoughts were screaming, ‘That’s MY birthday!!! His birthday is going to be MY birthday!’”

 Share  Tweet