Sunday, July 12, 2009

65/365 - Number One Fan

All week I've been volunteering at Common Ground, which is an outdoor music festival of sorts in Lansing. Nothing super huge, but it always has a good turnout and some good bands. This year I volunteered 6 of the 7 nights in the beer tent and had an absolute blast. People think I'm crazy for willingly working every night but I enjoy it. I get to hang out with some cool people and the people watching is always great too. Not to mention getting to hear all the concerts for free too, which is a small perk! This year I got to hear Huey Lewis and the News, Sherly Crow, David Cook, 3 Doors Down, Jet, Satefysuit, and Parachute, to name a few. Sheryl Crow was absolutely phenomenal and 3 Doors Down was great too!

So I spent my Sunday night at the beer tent in the middle of the lot where people had their chairs set up. It was pretty slow going at first so we were just hanging out. Mrs. P and I were messing around and being all hard core to some of the songs, which was hilarious. She then decided to stand up on the chair and rock out, and I told her to stay there because she was totally going to make her grand entrance into my blog.

I've known Mrs. P since I was in 6th grade when she was my teacher. I had a few pretty significant things occur in my life all within that year and she really reached out to me and saved my lost soul. I remember just writing these ridiculously long e-mails rambling about my problems with friends and other typical twelve year old drama that no one really wants to hear. But she listened, she offered support, and just let me ramble, which is what I really needed to do. She never had to do any of it and I'm sure there were times when she was busy and had other things to worry about, but getting short e-mails back from her were the things I looked forward to the most. While I was having major problems trying to fit into a crowd where I didn't belong and wasn't happy, I also had another significant event happen to me, which I kept private from my peers for several years. While I never talked about it with anyone, I assume she knew what was going on, as did my other teachers. She is the reason I want to be a teacher and the reason I want to teach 6th grade. Middle school is rough for many reasons... hormones, people trying to fit in and be cool, among other things. I struggled through middle school, like most others, and am now inspired to teach that age and hopefully be a positive adult role model to my students just as Mrs. P was to me. It's amazing how just one person can really make a difference and I want to pay it forward.

It's going on almost 13 years since I was a 6th grader, but Mrs. P and her family are still ever present in my life. I love spending time with them and being around them makes me happier than anyone could ever guess. I've pretty much watched her girls grow up and they are both awesome and I love having them in my life.

Wow, I'm super nostalgic now.

Common Ground X - Lansing, MI

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