The day everybody believed would bring horrible luck turned out to be one of the best days of my life.
It started out seemingly headed down that dark road when I realized I had left my eyeglasses at home, but things quickly took a turn for the better when a student–who was also my advisee last school year–paged me in the workroom before first period. I saw through the glass door that he had his hands behind him, and when I finally got outside, he had a box of chocolates, our class picture from the previous year, and a rolled up paper on top of the box.
This wasn’t a big surprise, though, since he told me the previous day that he had something for me. What surprised me was that he was actually telling the truth! When he told me about his “surprise,” he made it sound like he was kidding, so I had thought nothing of it until that moment. All of a sudden the fact that I’d go through parts of the day squinting at people and things, and possibly getting a migraine because my glasses weren’t around didn’t seem such a big deal anymore.
Of course I had to take a photo of his gift, so when I got to my desk, I whipped out my phone and snapped a few pics. Then I unrolled the letter and read. I could feel the tears pricking the back of my eyes, but they didn’t fall. All I felt was a tremendous amount of pride in this young man who has grown so much in the past two years.
His letter reads:
Dear Ms. Marifosque/Fab,
Thank you for being a cool, patient, and AWESOME teacher! Since you are a great teacher, I want to be sweet to you… but being sweet is something I naturally can’t do, so I hope the chocolates I gave you are sweet enough :). I will never forget that I had an adviser/teacher like you. Advance happy Valentine’s Day!
-The noisy, stonehearted, annoying student you’ve had,
(If there are errors, like grammar, I’m sorry.)
He wrote in his letter that he was “stonehearted,” and I was saddened to realize that something I told him last school year stuck with him. One day during lit circles in class, I discovered that he was an “unfeeling” person, unable to sympathize with people or be sensitive enough to know if he’s taken his jokes too far.
But because actions speak louder than words, I can honestly say that this kid has grown so much. I was proud of him then but I’m so much prouder now.
In the afternoon after dismissal, a few of my male advisees and their friends from the other section I handled fetched me from the workroom, brought me outside, and serenaded me with Maroon 5’s Sugar. Then they greeted me Happy Valentine’s Day and gave me their gifts (flowers and chocolates).
The gesture was truly touching, and it reinforced my notion that nothing was bound to give me a headache today. True enough, my day was made. There was no bad luck. 🙂