In February of this year I wrote a blog entry for my High School English Teacher Mrs. Pauline Saunders.. I think of her often and when I do, I am always thankful for the lessons I have learned from her. Both English assignments and life lessons. At the very bottom you will see my original blog entry and just below you can read a letter I wrote to “Pauline” today.
Dear Mrs. Saunders,
I hope this letter finds you well. Several things I want to tell you today. Remember last time we spoke on the phone and I told you that each time I write and submit an article for the Magazine I think of you, and am in gratitude for all those times you “forced” me to do my English assignment or go to the office. Well, this month the winter edition comes out and I Co-Authored an article with Mary Jo Rapini about healing the inner child. You would like her a lot, she is 5 foot tall, Italian, and feisty like you. She is a Sex therapist on the Discovery Channel and travels all over the country giving lectures on healing the inner child usually after a sexual trauma that occurred in childhood. At first I would crawl under the table and hide as she gave the lecture, but now I can sit through the entire thing.
Second I wanted to tell you I am really sorry I punched Chuckie Saunders (Your Grandson) in the nose when I was in second grade. I realize we were only kids, but he called me fat just because I had 3 servings of raisins for lunch that day. When he said it, the only thing I knew to do was punch him, then when his nose bled it scared me. For the next 30 PLUS years I kept anger inside (because I didn’t want to hurt others) and this week I wanted to punch someone in the nose again.. Since I am on a path of making amends with the people I have hurt in my lifetime, could you please pass the message on to Chuckie that I am not fat anymore, and I am sorry I made his nose bleed by punching him.
Third, I was in the grocery store today and in the flower section was a beautiful bouquet of roses. Amazing really 7 Red ones and 5 yellow ones. Immediately I thought of you and send you love and healing energy. I thought about them there boots you used to wear in the 80’s. The first time I saw those boots, I thought if the world was purple it would be such a lovely place. Now that I am grown, I know that to be true.
As I walked out of the store I saw a lady in the parking lot that looked so much like you, and I walked over and handed her one of my yellow roses. It brought such a beautiful and warm smile to her face. She thanked me and told me the rose was beautiful. She said she was having a very sad day, that her husband is not feeling well, and the rose brightened her day.
I got in my car and cried. To think that a single yellow rose could bring such a radiant smile to someone who is hurting.
Pauline, I don’t think I ever asked you to do anything for me, and I am asking you to look at the 5 yellow roses in a different light. Maybe when Charles gave the sixth yellow rose to the lady at the register he brightened her day (that might have been broken). I imagine if you close your eyes and imagine how a single yellow rose can heal a broken heart you will see what I mean.
I took the remaining Eleven roses to the ocean with me. I sat and thought about the abundance of love, health, and happiness I have been blessed with in my life. God is Good to me. I put those flowers in the ocean and watched them wash back on the shore. Several beautiful ladies who were walking by picked them up and the love just radiated on their faces. How often does the ocean give one a rose? It was an amazing day Pauline.
This month is Breast cancer awareness month. I am sending you lots of love…. I will always love them there purple boots!
“I never see a yellow rose, That I don’t think of you, It’s still my favorite flower, Though the Yellow’s turned to blue” Dolly Rebecca Parton
It’s very odd how my mind thinks! Today marks the twentieth anniversary of the day I got married. I wasn’t sure how I would view this day. Would I look back at all those years wasted, or would I look back in gratitude for the lessons I have learned along the way. I woke up to the beautiful sunrise, the sky was lit up in orange and it was an awe inspiring sight.
This morning I woke up thinking about my High School English Teacher, Pauline Saunders. When I was a Senior I thought Mrs. Saunders had to be the oldest person alive. She was after all my mothers teacher in high school as well and that was 21 years before me! During my High School Years, Mrs. Saunders and I seemed to fuss and argue a lot. Oddly enough even with all that fussing, I loved her with all my heart and respected her.
The day of my second semester Senior English exams Mrs. Saunders passed out the test paper, and I was doing my usual job being the class clown. She was wearing a pair of purple suade boots. Now, for those of you who know me and my Leo tendancies, you understand these PURPLE boots really spoke to me. My eyes were as big as saucers and I proclaimed loudly “Mrs. Saunders I love them there boots!”
Oh my gosh you would have thought the end of time had knocked on my forhead and she threw both hands on her hips and proclaimed “THEM THERE” “THEM THERE”!!!!! Followed by a “Go to the Office” It seemed like I had spent half of my senior year in the office compliments of Mrs. Pauline Saunders whom I truly loved and admired. I look back today and wonder if this was not another one of my feeble attempts for attention. I can just imagine the little girl inside me throwing her arms up yelling Pick Me Mrs. Saunders!!
Each time I write a blog entry, or an article for WLS Lifestyles Magazine I give thanks to my High School English Teacher. I often think back to the final English Exam during my Senior year at Herndon High School in 1988. Mrs. Saunders came in and passed out the exams and I didn’t even turn mine over! I thought to myself whybother? I live in a Podunk, West Virgina and I am not going anywhere. I am never going to get out of this place. I look back and realize my low self esteem and fear to grow as a person started at an early age.
When Mrs. Saunders took up the exam, she looked at me and asked me if there was a reason I did not do the test. I looked at her and said “I didn’t want to, because it doesn’t matter.” When the bell rang Mrs. Saunders did not let me leave her classroom. Instead she made me stay and take the exam, she talked to me and we laughed. She put her hand on my face and said “You have such potential to do great work, don’t waste your wisdom and talent.”
The next day we got our exams back and I got an A, and Mrs. Saunders gave me a page from a magazine with the photo of a dancer. She said I looked like the girl and reminded her of the photo. It was a beautiful girl with big letters on the add that says “Life is a dance — Begin to Live.” I carried that page from the magazine in my purse for several years.
I went to nursing school and stayed in West Virginia for a long time, got married 20 years ago today on a Saturday morning with snow in the air and grey skys. I just sort of woke up and participated in each days events, because that is where I was in life with my own self esteem.
I am happy to know that after 21 years I am beginning to dance! It’s af if I am waking up from a long hybernation, and can finally hear life’s music.
Recently, I became friends with Mrs. Saunders daughter on Facebook. Her daughter Darlene is someone I knew when I was younger, I always had a great respect and admiration for her. I asked Darlene about her mom and she told me she is a spunky as ever! Darlene has been a teacher and mentor for me lately. Darlene is Cherokee Indian and she has been teaching me a new Cherokee word each day, I look forward to the word with the excitement of a child. She also provided me the greatest gift of a phone number to reconnect with her mom.
When I heard Mrs. Saunders voice on the phone I thought to myself she sounds exactly the same. I laughed as she told me about how she is enjoying reading the Twilight series, and even though I am afraid of Vampires, she has encouraged me to read the series as well. I guess my lesson that was to be learned from her with that phone call was to step up and face my fear!
Mrs. Saunders was known by us students for her story telling. Some of the greatest story tellers ever came from the Appalachain mountains, and she is no exception. She has the unique ability to take you to the place she is speaking of, as if you are part of the story!
Her huband explained to her that the roses were so beautiful and the cashier at the Floral Shop went on and on about them. So he gave her one! Mrs. Sauders said she was furious and she told him if he didn’t think anymore of her than that, not to buy her roses again.