All weekend, little memories popped up in my life.
A song started the trip down memory lane:
The Doobie Brothers, Old Black Water. Every time I hear it, I smile and am immediately transported back to a school bus, traveling to a speech contest, singing at the top of my lungs with all of my best friends. It was such a happy, uncomplicated time in my life. And those memories of rehearsals, long bus rides, trips to "Mickey D's" make up a lot of my high school memories. I think it's why I loved coaching speech so much. I was able to help kids create those memories on their own and enjoy them again in the process.
Then I grabbed this coffee mug out of the cupboard and was once again student teaching in a small town not far from where I live now. I ate a lot of instant mac and cheese out of this mug. As the first person in my family to go to college, none of us had a clue about the needs of a college student. I lived in an apartment above a store in downtown. No car, so I walked everywhere. Not much for furniture. No refrigerator or stove! I had a hot plate and a crockpot and the grocery store was on the counter. A small portable TV that got one channel on which I watch every John Wayne movie ever made on Sunday afternoons, while I created lesson places and graded papers. I loved every minute of my time there. I was an adult, learning what kind of teacher I wanted to be and what kind I didn't.
Twenty years ago, we bought our little cabin at the lake. The previous owners left us this little artificial plant and shell doily for us when we took over. I was over the moon happy when we bought our cabin. It had been a life long dream to "live at the lake", and although I don't live there full time, our summers at the lake have definitely been my happy time. Even now, in the midst of quarantining, it brings us JOY to snuggle in there and watch the world around us. We passed on that love and now both boys live close enough to the cabin to visit often in the summer. The grandkids love coming to "the lake" and spending time with us. It truly is our family happy place.
And then, there is the class of 2020. They were freshmen during my last year of teaching and I've had many of them in classes when I sub. Four of them were on my freshmen speech team. In the last week, I've been friended on Facebook by many. Now, my rule has always been that I wouldn't friend kids until after they have their diploma in hand. But this year's class, well, I've made an exception. I don't know why they want to friend me on Facebook, most of them aren't really on much. Maybe it's just the connection from their high school memories. But that's OK. I'm friends with many former students and it's fun to watch their journey to adulthood. And it's nice to remember, that I made a difference, at least to a few.