Saturday, August 25, 2012


I am finished. Finished being walked over. Finished being talked to as though I am an idiot. Finished being the one making all the sacrifices. Finished worrying what others think. Finished trying to make everyone else happy. Finished being nice to people who have hurt me…used me.

For the past 10 years I have put on a happy face in order to make the people around me comfortable. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have been happy during the last 10 years. What I am referring to is the man who left his family and the woman who lured him away.

These two people changed the course of my life. They changed the course of my son’s life. This was done without a second thought. Their only concern was getting what they wanted and living their lives without the responsibility of a 3 year old.

There have been positives to come from the situation. I have learned more about myself, and my son’s magnificent personality developed. I have learned to stand on my own and my son has learned how devastating divorce can be. I am certainly not sad about those alterations in our lives, but the time has come for another change. I remember early into our divorce, my ex-husband’s mom told me I just needed to get over it (divorce). I was stunned. This from the woman who said she would shoot the temptress if she ever dared to step foot in their home. I was so concerned about pleasing my former mother-in-law that I compromised my own feelings. I smiled at the family wrecker when I saw her…hell, I even hugged her. I spoke to her with a smile on my face. I sat with her at my son’s activities. My stomach was turning inside out the entire time, but I’d be damned if I wasn’t going to “just get over it”. I have kept my mouth shut with my ex. I have tried to keep things light with him even as he began to open up about the issues in this, his third, marriage. He plays the martyr so well. I always end up feeling sorry for him. I mean, he is the father of my child.

Well, that’s all changing. He has spoken to me as if I were a child for the last time. She has lied to him about things she has said to and done in front of my child for the last time. I will not be treated this way. I will not tolerate it any longer. I am worth too much. I am too aware of their deceit. I am finally ready to move on. I will no longer hide my emotions, acknowledge the whore, or change everything to accommodate the man who chose to be the 6th husband instead of a father.

I am finished.

Thursday, July 5, 2012


Have you ever felt a connection with someone whom you have never even met?  I'm experiencing this feeling for the first time.  The only commonalities that might explain this connection are that 1) I have a son 2) I spent 4th through 11th grades in this family's town or 3) I long for unshakable faith.

The Erwin family is experiencing every parents' worst fear.  Their son is dying. Trey was a seemingly healthy young man, and then suddenly he was sick and given months to live. He is 15. His birthday is July 31. 16 was their goal. It's not going to happen.

Because of Facebook friends in Collierville, I learned about this family's journey.  I learned about the faith they have...the wisdom of a 15 year old boy...and the heartache felt by a community.  I have followed their journey through Trey's mother's journal.
I have cried. I have laughed. I have prayed.

I look at my son and think about the fact that nothing is certain. I must raise him to love God and to have the faith that I struggle with myself. I must instill in him a sense of self, confidence, and the knowledge that God is the only one who will ALWAYS be there.

God is paying attention to my struggle. I truly feel that he knows I am ready.  He knows I long for a deep relationship with him. I know he is paying son asked if I would pray with him last night. Granted, at first I thought he said, in his best British accent, "Would you like to play with me?" which caused me to look at him as if he were crazy. It took me a moment to realize he said "pray". We went to his room and prayed. I explained that I may be a bit shaky because I don't pray out loud in front of others. He was wonderful. When I couldn't find the words, he said them. He didn't laugh at my prayer. He took it very seriously. What a wise young man. He is leading me and doesn't even know it.

Trey Erwin has touched my life. Lisa Erwin has touched my life. I pray for peace and understanding for their entire family. God has used them to reach so many. They will never know all the lives they have touched and changed.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Are Teachers Educated? Worthy of Respect?

I am educated.  I have earned my bachelor's degree in education, completed student teaching with successful seasoned teachers, earned my master's degree specializing in literacy,and taught for seventeen years. On top of all these things, I have a son who will turn twelve this March.

When I began teaching, I naively thought that I could change lives.  I thought that parents, administrators, and other teachers would trust my judgment and intentions.  I thought I would have students who would want to learn and who would have parents who understood the value of education.  I thought my chosen profession would be respected.  Then I was hired in a school, and I realized how wrong I was.

I learned that the teacher is the least important person in the educational process.  I learned that I don't really know anything.  I don't know how to plan a lesson,teach a lesson,discipline a student, grade papers, relate to others, determine whether or not a student is learning, or do anything else related to educating our future leaders. I didn't learn this in a workshop or continuing education course.  I didn't learn this while obtaining my master's degree. I learned this from administrators, society, and  parents.

They taught me by telling me I had to do lesson plans a certain way even though it didn't fit my style of teaching.  They taught me by saying you must complete all of these objectives in a quarter.  All this time I had thought I should make sure students understood and mastered a skill before moving on.  Silly me!  They taught me by telling me not to hug the child who needs affection. Just wait until they mess up and then give them attention. They taught me by telling me no child can receive a zero...that might damage their self-esteem.  Let them have until the last day of the quarter to turn in their assignments.  Don't take off any points either.  Give that kid full credit! They taught me by showing me test scores.  Who knew your entire future should be determined by a test taken over the course of one week...but no, the other thirty-five weeks of school don't matter. Through emails, phone calls, and face to face scolding they taught me that students can't be responsible for their assignments, behavior, attitude, or how they treat others. They taught me by publicizing the teachers who made sick decisions instead of the countless others who have given so much.  They taught me by ignoring my concerns for students and our school.  What great lessons!  I am not sure why I even went to college!

Come on, people!  WAKE UP!!! My goal is to teach your child to read...write...organize...take responsibility...have pride in their work and become something that will give their lives purpose.  Is that so bad?  Don't we want these types of people heading out into the world?  Do parents really think they are going to be able to call their child's boss and tell them their little buddy didn't get those expense reports in on time because they had the sniffles???  Or that they had other things to do, so there was no way they could complete the multi-million dollar proposal?

Allow teachers to teach.  We are part of the profession due to our love of learning and desire to pass that on to students. It certainly isn't for the money, glory, or fame.  I have yet to see the red carpet rolled out for teachers who have dedicated their lives to the education and moral development of our future. with us.  Listen to us; we are the ones in the classroom. We are the ones who know what the students need. with us, not against us. Be involved.  Discuss goals, new knowledge, books, current events...encourage planning for the future, continuing education, and self-directed learning.  Support our decisions, ask questions when you are concerned, speak to us with the respect we have earned, and remember that we have twenty-five to thirty students in each class.  Volunteer to read with students and help with our programs...join the PTO/PTA.  Speak positively about our school, students, and teachers.

Society...step into a classroom...better yet, spend a day with a teacher.  When I say a day, I mean just that.  Get there when the teacher does...spend the day...stay until the teacher leaves...join the teacher at their home...go home when they actually finish their work for the night.  Experience it.

I guess I just want to be supported.  Don't we all?  I still love learning and passing that on to the kids.  I love the way their faces light up when they get it.  I love their curiosity.  I love my students.  If only I could stick with the kids and leave the adults out of it. 

Yes, I am educated.  I know how outsiders view me and my profession, but I also know that I am in this for the kids.  I know that somehow I will make a difference in someone's life and that is enough to keep me going a bit longer.