The last couple of days began with reminders from my students – one present, and the other a former student.
Friday morning started with the quote above and it was a wonderful way to begin the day. It is getting close to the end of the year and tests err, I mean assessments, are on the menu. My advanced chemistry students were finishing their two-day quest and my regular science classes were getting reviewing for their environmental science test on Monday. And, in US History, it was VE Day, and the WWII assessment. Giving assessments also means grading – and homework for me, too.
The end of the year brings closure and squirrely behavior, too. I’ll admit I am looking forward to summer, but not like, I was when I started writing MakingtheDaysCount.org. With 20 days remaining in the year – not counting weekends or Memorial Day – I am constantly reminding my charges that summer goes much more quickly than time in school. Especially for me.
Friday afternoon, the heavens opened and the Forces of Nature unleashed their fury. I was planning to attend a retirement party, then, watch O play softball, but swimming to my car didn’t appeal to me so I stayed late responded to a couple of e-mails and organized my papers to go home. By the time I was ready the storm had abated and it was just lightly raining. But, O’s game was cancelled and I was late. So, instead of rooting for O and her team, I spent a quiet evening at home with family. W worked on his Eagle project and I watched a basketball game and drifted in and out of sleep. B, W, and O came in to the family room for the last ten seconds of the Bulls game and the game winner. Nothing but net.
Saturday morning arrived and O and I had plans for the French Market – flowers and gifts for mom on Mother’s Day. But, I spent some quiet time starting the day – checking the schedule and reading my Twitter feed. I found JJ’s tweet. JJ’s a former student from the first group of kids I had. He was a sixth grader then, now he’s grown up and making his way. He was one of those kids that you know is special. He had a presence about him, even at 11 years old, that set him apart from his classmates. I haven’t seen him in years – but we’ve tweeted back and forth.
I took his advice and clicked, you should, too.
Good morning world. Please watch this incredible story. It’ll be the most important thing you do all day: http://t.co/8cTag4Iqew
— JJ Starr (@jj_starr) May 9, 2015
What I saw changed my day and redirected the day’s course.
I could not keep Life, Instagrammed off my mind and the thought of a young person – or anyone, for that matter – taking their life because they were not perfect, troubled me.
Sometimes the Forces of Nature re-direct and change my course and sweep me onto a different path.
O and I made it to the French Market and made our purchases – flowers, a gift for mom, pickled beets for Mother’s Day dinner then headed off to our next stop – electronic recycling. I had four dead laptops, an old camera, and several buckets of alkaline batteries. I took photos to share with my students Monday. We – humans – are a force of nature, too. And the force we exert at times, needs to be re-directed.
However, I couldn’t keep my mind off the video and how it changed my course. Like Madison Holleran, I have social media accounts – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Tumbler – I only post good things and I only see the good things other’s post, but I know there are parts of my life I don’t want folks to see – the struggles and disappointments – and, believe me, I have plenty. They don’t make it to social media posts, or even on the blog. I try to focus myself like a proton and think positive, a small force of nature. My kids – my own and my students – have accounts, too. And, I hope that through me they can see the force of nature and think positive.
It’s Mother’s Day and I am thankful for the Forces of Nature I call my wife and the mother of my children. I am thankful for the other forces of nature that made certain I made it to adulthood, my mom and my step-mom. There are other Forces of Nature, too and I am thankful for their gentle nudging to keep me focused and moving forward.
It’s Sunday morning and as usual, I have a long list to dos and I am grateful. It’s going to be a great day, I know it and I can feel it. So, I had better get a move on – literally jump up, jump in, and seize the day. Making the Days Count, one day at a time, staying positive – when nudged by a proton, a rainstorm, or a sad story.
What Forces of Nature re-direct you?
This post was, in part, influenced by this week’s Photo Challenge at WordPress – Forces of Nature. This week, share a force of nature from your corner of the world. It can be something as large as the Grand Canyon, or as small as the tiny seedling steadily breaking is way through the concrete in your driveway.