Tuesday, November 9, 2010
oh so proud
This visit happened this summer but I just had to go back to it because it makes me so happy. This is Caitlin and Ian, brother and sister. They're all grown up now but I remember them best as first and second graders. Long, long ago, I was their teacher. (although I'd like to think, once their teacher, always their teacher)
And I adored them... they were the kind of kids that every teacher wanted to have... eager to learn, happy, sweet, kind to everyone, and always willing to give hugs. I wish I had time to dig up pictures from when they were little. I have so many.
I have so much I could tell you about Caitlin and Ian but here is just a little about each:
Caitlin: She knows this story. I'll never forget. It was her first day of first grade in a new school. She was scared. She sat on the office couch with her mom and little brother (Ian). He was adorable, maybe 3 at the time. She wore a jean jumper (I think) and had a yellow plastic lunch box. Her hair was just the same as in this picture. She always wore it that way. And she smiled a little smile. I took her hand and led her down to the classroom. I remember introducing her to the class and her eyes swelled up with tears. And she won my heart, just then. But Caitlin was strong. She took a deep breath and started her day. It was just a matter of minutes before she was loved by the rest of the class too. You just couldn't help it. I know that starting college (and anything in life) will be the same for her as well (well maybe without the tears). She'll be loved in just minutes. She's hard working, humble, patient, sweet, and kind. Oh how happy I was to find out that after all these years and a move far away that nothing has changed. She's still just that way.
Ian: So when I had to move to second grade to teach I was to say the least bummed, except for one thing... Ian was a first grader (and he wasn't in my class). So moving to second grade might just allow me that! Yeah, Ian was so much fun to be around. He was the kind of boy (all boy for sure) that loved recess more than anything but he never let on. He worked so hard when he had too. But I remember well that look on his face when it was time for recess and lunch. He was oh so sweet too and that smile... some things never change. Still just as polite, kind, gentle, funny, delightful to be around. It makes me so happy that I was a small part of his life. I can remember when he was in my class and he'd see Caitlin in another line walking near our line. He'd slip out of line quickly and give his sister a hug. Melt your heart ever time.
There are so many, so so many kids that have touched me along the way. Thanks you though Caitlin and Ian for staying touch, for visiting after all these years, for making me proud that once (a long, long time ago) I was your teacher. You are loved.
Do you remember the last book I read to you both when you were in my class on your last day of school? No, of course you don't. But I do: Oh, the Places You'll Go! (Dr. Seuss) And on the last page I changed some of the words. I think I'll do it again:
Congratulations! Today is your day.
You're off to Great Places! You're off and away!
You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
(skipping the whole middle of the book...read it again one day, it's great!)
And will you suceed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)
Kid, You'll move mountains!
So be your name Buxaum or Bixby or Bray
or Caitlyin or Ian or any I'll say,
you're off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So... get on your way!
Love you guys!