Photos available

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Thank you, Ms. Margaret

I was just in a Facebook conversation thread with my seventh grade Social Studies teacher.  She commented on a status I posted (after hiding someone's Greg Abbott social media ad) agreeing with me about canned social media ads not swaying my opinion regarding candidates.  She said that God gave her enough brains to figure that stuff out for herself and she didn't need help from Facebook, either.  I made another post in which Santa is pictured.  Because he has read our Facebook statuses, our gifts this year shall be dictionaries.  There were quite a few comments on that thread as well as some interaction from Ms. Margaret.  I mentioned that I own a 1987 version of the unabridged dictionary that I could donate to Santa's cause.  It is missing nearly 30 years of techie terms, such as the use of  the word Google, but it has all the important words that we should know and be using (resisting the urge to end the sentence with lol- pun intended).  Then, she just threw it in there, "BTW, I'm proud of you."  Before I said thank you, my mind was racing through all of the students I knew that she taught.  One of my friends has a PhD in French literature.  Many of her students have masters degrees, and I think she also taught Herschel Walker (our math teacher taught him, and she was never at a loss for a story about him).  Some of her children (students) are smarter than I am, and many of them have made better choices than I have, so I am humbled that she is proud.

Growing up, I was always in classes with the smarter, more privileged students, but most of them were not my friends.  I was bullied before there were campaigns against it.  Books were a great escape, and my few friends were welcome companions.  My mom spent my childhood in survival mode, doing the best she could, while my other parents were not over the fact that they were supposed to be grown ups.  Ms. Margaret and EVERYONE I grew up with knew this.  I had "I'm Getting the Hell out," syndrome when I graduated from high school.  I was delayed a year as we moved almost the minute I walked across the stage to get my diploma. However, I did get the hell out the next year.  I didn't have all those offers from all those schools that I had gotten previously, but I did go to college.  Most of the other girls with GTHO syndrome got pregnant and got married, but I didn't have a boyfriend, so that was out.  College it was.  Then I dropped out.  Then I went to nursing school and wondered why I did that. There were and still are things that aren't easy, but through the little education I have, I have been available to afford myself the kind of middle class existence that most of my classmates had.  As a young girl, I believed in myself enough to become the woman I am becoming.

Thank you, Ms. Margaret, for reminding me of the journey!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Oh, to sing again!

One of the dear crones in my life told me one day not to forget my family.  She meant for me to stay in touch with my holistic fair people and my church choir people.  She was disappointed to hear that I had not gone to New York at the last opportunity I had, and she and my other vendor friends had been missing me at the fair.

Honestly, I have less than zero interest in going to church every Sunday morning and having someone tell me what the bible says. (Why would this dear friend encourage such, as I know she prefers to stay home to watch Joel Osteen when she wants some church in her life?)  I know what it says.  I've actually read the whole bible for myself many times.  I wasn't excited at her words to me, encouraging me to participate in choir. Around that same time,  I had been to a funeral where I saw several people I knew and met a few that I hadn't known.  They were shocked to learn that I hadn't been singing and invited me to come and sing with them again.  It made me wonder what I have to say that the church would want to hear.  When I was a church going, bible thumping person, it seemed that no one cared what I had to offer.  There was always more politics than praise happening at any given point.

However, there was tonight.  I was on my way home from my last stop.  I had been near the big church with the big choir that travels to fun places that make you never want to come home.  I was having a moment of inexplicable intuition that told me to go back and go to choir practice.  So, I did.  I had previously been truthful with the director about wanting to sing but having no interest in going to church on Sundays.  Tonight,  I was able to share the same thoughts again about my church feelings with another of this staff,  and was welcomed back again by my old friends.  It is a glorious feeling to be as honest as I have been with those in charge of this choir and to hear the words again, "You are always welcome here."  Right now, I plan to sing for Christmas and for this Sunday.  The Randall Thompson Alleluia is more beautiful than my wish to stay away.