Friday, May 10, 2013

Leaving a mark

Went to the cemetery with my mother to fix an arrangement on my Dad's grave.  Close by was a lady putting flowers on the grave of a son who died many years ago, but far too young.  It would have been his birthday.   She was accompanied and assisted by a granddaughter.  This granddaughter was a little embarrassed by her just-washed hair and lack of makeup because she was once one of my students.

We visited a while, and she told me I was her favorite teacher. Not only was that incredibly sweet of her to say, but it really makes me think.  How many small things do we do that leave impressions--good and bad--on others?  She was in my class at least 25 years ago, and in my memory she was a gentle, obedient, good-natured girl.  What did I do to deserve that place in her memory?

It reminds me to be conscious of the daily, seemingly small interactions we have with others.  How are those remembered?  I'm sure sometimes we fade into vague recollections, and I often speak without enough thinking.  That kind young woman reminded me that if I leave a mark as I pass by, I'd like it to be a good grade.