Blog Your Blessings: Not What I Learned in School

From August 31, 2011

From August 31, 2011

Before the school building principal who hired me moved on to become a high school principal, I stopped into his office and thanked him for hiring me and affording me the many opportunties that had come my way as a teacher in his school. I told him I was especially grateful to him for hiring me because I knew I had botched the interview (which botch I had tried to correct by supplying the correct answers to the questions in my thank you letter, which was hand delivered the next day).

He smiled and said he hired me because "you're enthusiastic, you don't complain, and you like the kids."

I thanked him again and told him I'd walk through the fires of hell for him if he said the word. I have not done that (or perhaps I have) as I have continued to teach English to some seriously reluctant learners and students who have had some seriously lousy teachers.

On many a day, that conversation with my principal comes back to me. It strikes me for the first time every time that those qualities that landed me the job had nothing to do with anything I learned in school. They are matters of heart.

Taking a walk with my daughter near my parents' home, we stopped alongside the brook to see if Clyde felt like stepping in. He did not. He was happy to admire the view. I wonder if he noticed what I did: the notches in the rock in the stream formed by countless years of water flowing over, in, and around it. Often, I feel like a rock in the stream, slowly shaped over time by what is--with enthusiasm but without complaint just because it's there.

It's good to stand back and see that the rock is part of a beautiful, tranquil landscape, despite its noise.


  1. great insights are coming to you...enthusiasm I believe originally meant filled with God's spirit...and you have love too.

  2. Enthusiasm...what a beautiful quality to possess!! A positive attitude and pleasant outlook on life makes it so special. You have blessed the principal as well.

  3. Anonymous9:17 PM

    So like your thought on that seasoned rock being part of its beautiful surroundings and you know what, the rock is a stunner in its own way. Peace and blessings your way.

  4. I like this Sandy! YOur students are fortunate to have you as a teacher and we are fortunate to share your insights! (and the pictures are good too ;>)

  5. You are a great teacher. It is good that you are solid as a rock yet pliable enough to mould into something beautiful to the world.


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