Thursday, April 23, 2009

barb spencer

difficult problems
in full bloom
through seasons of sweat and chill
a breakthrough may only be a small step away
all in good time
you can count
the power
ease the
day be day,
you win.

1997-1998.....In my second year of teaching sixth grade at Carmel Middle School, I was working with an amazing team of teachers. There were three of us. We all taught a Reading/Language Arts Block, and then the kids rotated through for Social Studies (me), Math (Lisa), and Science (Barb). In February of that year, Barb informed us that her breast cancer had returned, and she would be undergoing intense treatment for the rest of the school year. She would be taking the rest of the year off. For two young teachers, the news was hard; for our kids, it was devastating. Somehow, we made it through to the end of the school year, having lost a teacher the kids loved, and having to make due with a substitute they could barely tolerate.

Over Spring Break that year, I made Barb a journal. For the cover, I cut out various pictures and phrases from magazines, and arranged them together with some homemade paper I had left over from the days when I made homemade paper. She told me that it would be her gratitude journal.

In September of this year, after my breast cancer diagnosis, Barb returned that journal cover to me. She had somehow cut if off of hers, and glued it onto the cover of another. I take it with me to every doctor appointment, jotting down notes, unfamiliar words, statistics, observations of waiting rooms, phone numbers, and occasionally, things for which I am grateful.

Today, I am grateful for a found poem.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Generally you hate to see a gift returned to you, but this full-circle gift was a blessing.