Wednesday, May 15, 2013

More Life Lessons with Teacher Katie

teacher clip artYou can't judge a book by its cover--this is something we all know. But do we do it? Probably not, right? I was reminded of this mantra a few days ago. I was at a gas station when a very nice car pulled up. To my surprise, out climbed three women, all wearing pajamas!

I chuckled and shook my head. My first thought was, "Why would anyone go out in public in their pajamas?"

As soon as the thought formed, I remembered something. Nearly three years ago now I made a road trip to Memphis for the very first time, and yes, I was in my pajamas. It wasn't because I wanted to be comfortable for the drive, or that I had just woke up, or that I was lazy or dirty. It was because I was so out of my mind, I remember literally looking around my room wondering what on earth I should put on. I grabbed the first thing I came to, and I climbed in the car to go.

I sure am glad no one judged me based on my decision to wear bed clothes out in public.

Of course, it's probably a good guess that these three ladies weren't involved in a life or death situation. But how could I ever know? It was a good life lesson reminder--you can't judge a book by its cover!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Lost Innocence

Everything we do in life changes us--either for the good or the bad. This post is hard to write, even though it's something I've been thinking about writing for a while.

Emma's cancer journey has changed her. It stole her innocence and left her fearful of everything. When she and Ashlyn play outside, Ashlyn runs into the trees, laughing and chasing butterflies. Emma stands back, near the porch, watching Ashlyn have fun. While Ashlyn tries the monkey bars, Emma does the safe thing and only sits on the swing. While Ashlyn proudly tries to ride a bike, Emma sticks to her 3-wheeled scooter because it doesn't wobble.

Have you ever seen a parent place a child on a counter top and instruct the child to "jump to daddy"? Most kids will leap without abandon. Not Emma. I don't think we could even bribe her into jumping. Not only is she fearful of everything, she is un-trusting of us as her parents. You see, we've had to put her through so many terrible experiences that she doesn't believe yet that we don't have something up our sleeves.

It is my hope and prayer that someday soon she will move past this, because while most kids are busy playing in their blissful innocence, Emma has none of that in her. It was lost long ago.

I didn't write this to sadden anyone, or to make people feel sorry for Emma. Instead, I wrote it to make you stop and think--what have you been through, and how have you allowed it to change you?