if not me, then who?
You know those moments in life where you wish you were-I dunno-asleep, laid out in front of the television set watching Kathie Lee and Hoda talk about the latest gossip, or even swinging on the porch reading a book with a dachshund on your lap?
Well, that’s about all I’ve been capable of thinking about the past few weeks.
What a tornado. What a hot mess. It all left me ready to check myself into the nut house.
Selling a house is no joke. Selling your things, trying to organize repairs that need to get done, reading and re-reading and misreading the contract about what could go and what could stay, and finally, moving out the two truck loads of things that I decided to keep, all what with being single and having to rely on some amazing friends to get me through it-is no joke.
I am thankful for friends who never allow me to feel the full weight of being alone.
And all of this on top of my normal obligations. And on top of letting go of a house that has a piece of my heart. And on top of having to do it all on my own. Quite the shit sundae.
But because of my friends who helped see me through all of the craziness, I saw an end, a pause button, and I felt hope. Hope that my house would be passed along to a couple who would love my house as much as I did. Hope that living each day for what it is would help bring me to where I need to be.
I sat in a poverty workshop last Friday, focusing on kids dealing with extreme poverty and extreme stress that goes with it and how to reach these kids.
And I thought of a friend of mine who overcame poverty.
Her family did not, still has not, but she has.
She graduated high school with honors. She graduated a local university with honors. She won the art department award. She received an unheard of scholarship to a fancy schmancy art and design school in New York City.
I sat in my classroom, thinking about the workshop and thinking about my sweet friend. I texted her to let her and explained my morning and explained that my pride for her accomplishments had been puffed.
And do you know that I just happened to text her in the middle of a situation where she was having some difficulty with family members?
How do you like that.
The world is a slap in the face. That’s about what it amounts to. Horrible, selfish, “the world centers around me” people end up married with as many children as they like, and as much as I hate the saying, “no good deed goes unpunished”….it’s true.
And in that poverty workshop, the one thing that kids like my friend had to get themselves out of the poverty cycle was hope. In the midst of not knowing where their next meal was coming from, or having to give up their beloved pet at the animal shelter, or a mom with cancer, they had hope.
It’s up to us to give that hope. To receive that hope. To not keep it to ourselves.
Because if not us, then who?
My friend is my inspiration to get out of my bed and get myself to work each day. Her former self would fit in my classroom exceptionally. My kids are her. She is them. And when I catch myself thinking, “they don’t stand a chance”….I think of my friend.
And of course they stand a chance.
If we allow them the chance to stand.
I’m about to say goodbye to this group of kids and close up my classroom for the summer. I am physically and mentally exhausted, but there’s a part of me that wonders where and what and how some of my kids will be this summer. I am not the easiest teacher in the world. I am pretty hard on my kids and I build them up to be better. But I do pray that I’ve given them hope.
If not me, then who?
If not them, then who?