You guys know I don’t typically have sponsored posts on my blog. If I DO blog about something, it’s something I really use or something I really love. I feel in my heart that if a company approaches me and it’s not a good fit, then I pass the opportunity on to someone who IS a perfect fit. I can't blog about something I don't use or like.
This platform of mine isn’t one that I’ve cultivated in order to make money. (Oh sure, it would HELP, but was never my intention...) I write here so that I can write HERE. I share my life, my soul, my good and my bad.
And so with that being said, I want to say that I DO adore the Sweet Relish people. This business involves some people who I have known for a year or so, and I admire and respect. Oh, and also, they sent me a gorgeous vodka infuser! Sweet LORD in heaven! (And no, it was NOT a bribe….)
Here, without further ado, is a post that I read, re-read, and thoroughly approved of. Perhaps because the student's name is one that I will always hold dear to my heart. Those who know ME, know why. (sniff, sniff.) Enjoy….
So, it’s finally happened. One of my former students found me on Facebook and asked if I would be able to go to her high school graduation this May.
Of course, my first thought was “how is it humanly possible that Cameron is old enough to graduate?” In my mind, she- and all the other fourth-grade students I taught throughout the years- are locked in time. They can’t be getting ready to graduate, they’re nine! One look at her Facebook profile pic told me otherwise (I, however, am convinced that every former student could recognize me anywhere, because I look exactly the same as I did a decade ago).
I thought back to the days when I had Cameron in my class and had no problem conjuring up memories. She was one of my favorites. And yes, I know teachers aren’t supposed to have favorites, but Cameron was special because at first, I had a hard time with her. She was chatty and sassy and talked back a lot. She was, in teacher speak, “a challenge.” We all know that’s shorthand for “pain in my ass.”
And then, a couple months into the year, she started to grow on me. I realized how much she made me laugh. I mean, she didn’t give a fig about homework or responsibilty, but there was something so refreshing about her confidence and personality. The two of us worked together to develop a behavior plan, and she did well. Her grades went up. She wound up having a great year.
So now, ten years later, I couldn’t have been more excited to get her message. She told me how much she wanted me to come to the graduation, because I was her favorite teacher, and I had meant so much to her. What teacher doesn’t want to hear that?
Oh, she added at the end, she saw pictures of my kids on fb and they were so cute! Did I ever need a babysitter?
It was kismet. I actually needed a babysitter that Saturday, at 12. Could she do it?
Sure! Cameron replied. I’m available!
Okay, I explained in my message. I would need her to pick up my five-year-old from a birthday party. I’d give her all the directions. Was she comfortable with driving her the short distance back to our house?
Cameron’s reply was as follows. “Oh, did you mean twelve in the afternoon? I thought you meant at night. Sorry, I can’t, I have plans then. But, I’d still love if you could come to the graduation.”
I had to read the reply several times to let it register. When I asked her for 12 o’clock, she thought I meant…midnight? She was going to show up to my house to babysit on Saturday… in the middle of the night? Where did she think I might be going at that hour- a rave? Perhaps a quick meth run?
Sweet Cameron. Apparently she didn’t learn quite as much as I thought she had in my class. That’s ok. I’ll still go to her graduation, be there to cheer her on. She’s still one of my favorites. I don’t know if I’ll ask her to babysit again, though.
Because I work for Sweet Relish, I started putting together a list of some graduation gifts for her. The book Oh, the Places You’ll Go is on every grad’s list, but it’s special because I read it to each class on the first day of school. Others are more practical- a monogrammed laundry bag and travel charger. I’d include a clock in the list, but… I believe it might be lost on Cameron.
Victoria is a former fourth-grade teacher, mother of two, and writer for Sweet Relish. Because she is no longer in the classroom but still has a need to control chaos, she finds that making lists is a good way to channel that energy.