I have been fortunate with winning the teacher lottery. Every year, there is a jackpot of some sort. Perhaps it is a consequence of winning an early jackpot and then enjoying the spoils year after year. With copious fresh additions! Maybe, my teachers in early life have taught me tricks to hit jackpot every year.
A quick accosting of my memory bank surfaces multiple instances where what they taught me back then stays with me and guides me. And has added on to the memory of the day.
“Be the best you can be. And remember, there is ‘better’ beyond your ‘best’. Always.” A hand written note after a play said.
“Stay kind”, another teacher had said. “Help people”. In December 1992. When he spotted me really upset on a sepulchral day.
“Stay curious. You are dead without it”. Another said.
“If I catch you slacking, I am coming after you. No matter where you are”. Said the Biology teacher after I won a quiz competition.
Time after time, they saw in me what I didn’t see. They looked at a scruffy imperfect chap but always looked beyond the imperfections. They pointed me to an eternal spring of hope and promise. That keeps me going.
And one wise lady who pulled me at the end of the year, gave me a hug and said, “Stay thankful”. I want to tell her and all my other teachers from the past and present, that I try. Every year.