On Humility and Grace

Image by Gabe Raggio from Pixabay

During my early morning walk today, I felt a deep sense of awe looking up the majestic redwood trees growing near my mother’s home. There was a simplistic beauty in the way the rising sun extended its rays between the leaves and branches. The aging crevices of the tree trunks gave the impression that these trees carry a kind of wisdom unknowable to any of us. We’re left to surrender, receive and be grateful. I finished my walk inspired by the trees to write about what it means to be humble.

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Naturally Me

Image by Ulrike Leone from Pixabay

During my second year of teaching, my 3rd graders arrived at school dressed in new outfits and every hair on their heads combed, brushed, picked, or gelled perfectly into place. I greeted each student at the classroom door with the same question, “Which smile did you bring for Picture Day?” They all humored me, as children gracefully do, with some kind of grin or smirk. However, there was one that arrived in tears. I’ll call her Madeline. It broke my heart to find out that Madeline’s absolute devastation centered on her hair. In her words, it was “too poofy” and “all messed up.” Madeline remained upset all the way up to our scheduled picture time. It didn’t help when the photographer handed her one of those super cheap, super thin, plastic combs (not made for her hair type) so that she can “fix” her hair.

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In a Moment with Daddy

Image by maneseok Kim from Pixabay

In the latter parts of my childhood, I was raised in a single parent home. It took many years for me to even wrap my head around that fact about my life. Confirmation came in an effort to make connections with some of my students who were not going home to a father to greet them. I found myself saying, “I’m like you.” However, my father’s presence, attention, and love embraced me so much in the time I had with him that I never really felt he was absent from my life.

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Resuming a Dream

Image by Robert Armstrong from Pixabay

“It’s not where your dreams take you, it’s where you take your dreams.”

Maya Angelou-poet, author, storyteller, civil rights activist

The idea of becoming a published writer lingered in my mind for a number of years. However, it seemed unrealistic and in some ways self-serving to actually pursue making it happen. You see, writing has always been good for me and to me. Writing provided comfort whenever I poured my joys and struggles onto the pages in my journals. In personal letters, writing offered an opportunity to share my vulnerability with family and friends as I expressed my gratitude, apology, or forgiveness. Writing poetry taught me that words matter and they create art from thoughts and emotions. Like a BFF, taking pen to paper has always been a deeply personal and private relationship I shared with writing…or so I thought.

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