No Regrets

Hosted by Two Writing Teachers
Hosted by Two Writing Teachers

SOL Tuesday

I woke up that day in June and knew it was time.

I had been thinking about it for months, but didn’t know it as clearly as I did that sunny morning.

Mom came over and we put you in your cage… once we were able to pluck you from your hiding place behind the T.V.  It seemed like a particularly cruel thing to do on such a sad day.

Driving in the car you wailed and cried.  Your cries always sounded like someone was pulling your nails out one by one.  Blood curdling.  Sitting at the stoplight a woman looked over at me as if I had a screaming child stuffed in my trunk.

As we got closer I wondered, for a brief moment, if it was a good idea.  But, I knew it was because I always regretted not going inside with Marney and Ben.  I can still see, in my mind, how it looked to walk out the door and get in our car without seeing it through.  We could see our beloved pet being led through the back door by the assistant….without us….their best friends.  The ones they trusted the most.  How could we just leave them like that?

Back to that clear summer morning and the dreaded task we faced.  We arrived.  They were nicer to us than usual.  We were directed straight into a quiet room where you were able to get out of your cage and roam around.  But, you didn’t.

You sat in my lap and whimpered.

The next part is like it happened just yesterday instead of 6 years ago.

Then he came in.

Dr. Bagglio was as kind as sweet as he could have been.  “Hi Sam,” he said.  “Good boy, Sam.”  We put you on a table and I held you against my body.

I’ll never forget the feeling.  You had life inside you.  You were breathing.  And then,  you weren’t.  The little heart beat I could feel against my stomach just stopped.  With that my stomach felt sick.  You felt empty.  Vacant.

Your lifeless little furry body lay limp in my arms and I burst into tears.  My only solace at that moment was knowing that I was right to be there with you at your final moment.

No regrets.  And….no more pets.  I can’t do this anymore!

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Senses are Coming Alive

Sitting by the pool this morning…on vacation in California….I realized that I was eating my breakfast slowly. Now, that may not seem like a big deal to anyone, but it was huge for me. It meant that I was relaxing and finally slowing down. Yeah! It felt good. 

As soon as this relaxation thing hit me I started smelling the fragrant flowers just behind our table. I started hearing the lapping water the swimmer’s were gently making as they went back and forth. Back and forth in the crystal blue water. And I really tasted my food. It was pretty good, too!

That’s all I have since I’m out of town. I’m relaxing.

Grace

Hosted by Two Writing Teachers
Hosted by Two Writing Teachers

SOL Tuesday

My word to live by for 2013 (and beyond!) is Grace.  I chose this word because I admire people who:

  • Give others the benefit of the doubt
  • Listen without interrupting
  • Really listen to others…..and then consider their point of view
  • Forgive others – even when they’ve been hurt
  • Have empathy – really envision what the other is experiencing

I want to make these acts a part of my l life.  As much as I admire those who have it/ use it – I can’t say that I see it often enough.  I didn’t do this slice in January, so from this point on I will start to look for evidence of grace in the world around me.  I’ll bet, now that I live such a writerly life, I will see it everywhere!

Sox or Cubs Fan?

Hosted by Two Writing Teachers
Hosted by Two Writing Teachers

SOL Tuesday

This not a question I ever asked myself 15 years ago. All that changed when I went to work in my new school district.
My boss asked, “Are you a Cubs or Sox fan?”
Uh Oh, I thought.  Is this a condition of my employment?

“Both”, I said.  Thought I’d play it safe.
“No, you can’t be both. You have to pick one.”
“Why?   That seemed so wrong!  I’m from Chicago and I root for both teams to win!”
“Nope. You have to pick one, otherwise you’re not a true fan.”  A true fan?  How does he know if I’m a true fan, or not??
And so it went. I had to pick. The process of picking actually turned me into a bigger Sox fan and a huge Cub hater. I was all in. Pretty quickly I began to notice other “true fans” and the pure hatred they had for the other team.
Now I can’t even park on the “Cubs floor” at the O’Hare Airport garage!  And, if someone gets on the elevator at said garage I refuse to let them hit that ugly royal blue button.
What has happened to me??
My boss says…..welcome to the club 🙂

Our Community is Growing

Hosted by Two Writing Teachers
Hosted by Two Writing Teachers

SOL Tuesday

Yesterday we had a meeting with our “Summer Fun” ( Summer School) teachers.  We talked about the value of actually writing when you are a teacher of writing.  We discussed the importantance of doing ourselves what we ask of our students.  This summer we have challenged our students to write every day for 10 minutes….therefore, we need to write every day for at least 10 minutes!

One of our fellow Slicers gave a brief presentation about the Two Writing Teachers site and how to make our own blog.  From there we gave ourselves the gift of silence and we wrote.  We wrote.  And we wrote some more.  I made some observations in my writers notebook about what I saw and what I was thinking….

17 teachers sitting side by side with 5 administrators…..all writing.

The serenity of the soft classical music playing in the background made our space feel very calming, relaxing and important.  The “important” part felt just as good as the “calming” part.  We were doing important work.

One teacher moved to a separate chair, away from everyone else.  I’m guessing he did this so he could think clearer – be uninhibited as he wrote.  Maybe he was just more comfortable in his new seat.

Some were quietly whispering.  Chatting about their writing.  Smiling.

Pens were flying on the paper.  Looks of determination and of tranquility on their faces.  Great vibes throughout the room.

Flipping back through writers notebooks.  Perhaps looking for inspiration.  Maybe reliving certain experiences and thinking about writing some more.

A few possibly dealing with writers block?  Maybe.  But, never for long.

In my own notebook I am writing about how proud I feel to be a part of this growing community of writers.  Excited that we may have new members very soon.  Humbled at the brain power around the table.  Satisfied with the accomplishments of those who have come before them.  Looking forward to more writing sessions with my colleagues.  Thoroughly amazed at how the act of writing can bring so many people together in one time and place.  Grateful for the personal and professional reward gained from this session – for the teachers, their families, their students….the world.