I can't believe it has been almost a month since I was last on my blog. I have been waiting for the perfect words, and the perfect time to post this, and today seems to be as good a day as any...
Every July my family and I head out for a week in the woods. We are by no means true campers, as we have a travel trailer with running water and electricity. None the less, we look forward to this outing each year. We always begin our camping adventure at our family reunion and then head up to another camping spot for a smaller gathering with our immediate family. This year, due to fires in the White Mountains of Arizona and an earlier start date at school we did our smaller family campout first and then headed to our family reunion. For the first time in 28 years, I was heading home from my reunion instead of further north. While this was sad for us, it led to an eye opening encounter that has changed the way that I now perceive the things in my life.
It all begin on the San Carlos Indian Reservation while we were stopped at a Casino/RV park dumping our trailer. I took my 3 year old daughter and 7 year old son in with me to pay for the dump station usage and both kids asked if they could spend their last bit of summer allowance on a treat for the ride home. I helped them pick out a snack within their price range and then proceeded to the check out. As I was helping each child count out the correct change for the cashier, a kind lady sat watching us. I had a feeling she was a teacher by the way she watching me, and how patiently she waited for her turn as the kids slowly counted out their change.
As we began walking out of the store, the clerk proceeded to help the lady behind us. She was paying for an RV spot. When the lady asked her if it was just for the night she replied with, "No, I will be here for 9 months. I am the new teacher at the school." She then told her the parking space that she had taken.
I was speechless.
On my way back to my trailer I happened to pass her home for the next 9 months and was brought to tears at the generosity and compassion of this teacher. I now keep a copy of the picture I took as a reminder of how blessed I really am, and how little I sacrifice compared to so many other teachers out there.
I just want to say "Thank you" to the unknown teacher who has touched my life in more ways than she will ever know.