That's what Susie did for me and many of my coworkers who knew her.
This was a woman who went back to school and got her teaching certificate at 60. She had already worked many years with students, but followed her calling to her true dream job of teaching. She was a natural.
She loved each and every single one of her students unconditionally. Even when they were bouncing off the walls and doing their best 2 year old impressions. Even on field trip days when she pretended they were driving her crazy.
She loved them through their insecurities and boosted them into a confidence that helped them grow to love learning. They enjoyed coming to school each day and being surrounded by her love for them. You could tell by their deep respect for her and their ever-present smiles.
She loved me through my moments of craziness. She loved me even though I was always trying to prank her. She loved to make me feel special. She loved me through my diva teacher of the year phase. She especially loved me when Mr. TV was literally making me crazy (and helped me see his humor and love him through it).
She loved us all when she was sick and we tried to make her take it easy. She hated when that stupid, stupid cancer forced her to retire way before any of us were ready.
And despite that stupid, stupid, STUPID cancer, she recognized every day as a gift and took the knocks as they came with a smile on her face. She is one of the strongest women I've ever known.
If you are really really lucky, you have this kind of person in your life. Hug them tight. Tell them how amazing they are. Make sure they know how much you appreciate their friendship and support.
And try your very hardest each and every day to be someone they would be proud of.
You will be missed, Susie. Go rest high on the mountain.
|Susie Brown Burns July 15, 2046 - June 4, 2015|