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Saturday, April 4, 2009

Time in a Bag

There is a lady who wears a pink coat who walks down 4th avenue each morning. I don't know her name, I don't know where she is going, I don't know her story. The only thing I know about her is that between the times of 7:15 and 7:45 you can see her walking west down the south side of North 4th Avenue every Monday through Friday. Knowing this about a complete stranger probably makes me sound a bit stalkerish. The only reason I know this about the lady in the pink coat is because I take the same path each morning, only I am driving down North 4th Avenue. Rain, sleet, sun, snow, wind; she is always there, walking with her quick pace and a small backpack covering the back of her pink coat. She doesn't carry a purse, umbrella, or shoulder bag, just her pink coat and backpack.

Although this woman probably isn't even aware of this, she is my clock each morning. The block she is walking down as I near her each morning tells me whether I am early, on time, or late to work. Some mornings I see her and smile to myself knowing that when I reach my school I will have time to clean up my classroom, work on IEP's, and perhaps even prepare an incredible hands on lesson intriguing lesson for my bubbly first graders. You know, the kind of lesson that allows them to get down on the floor, make a mess, have fun, and learn at the same time. The kind of lesson that takes time and preparation, which teachers rarely get anymore during their day to plan. Other days as I approach the lady with the backpack in a pink coat, I begin to perspire just a bit and my heart rate increases along with the speed of my car. I'm late. It is always on the mornings that I have so much to do. I know that I will be getting there right at 7:45 or even a bit after. I have to mentally prepare for things I can get done in the short 10-15 minutes rather than having 1/2 hour to prepare for my day, caffeinate myself, and get organized.

It's funny how this lady, whom I don't even know, influences my day, and she doesn't even have a clue. Coming to this realization made me think more about this. Are there others in my life that influences me, my career, my motherhood? There are. There are people out there who have changed me, influenced me, and pass me by each day and don't even say hello, but can someone make me reflect on why they are in my daily life.

I wonder....do I influence anyone without knowing it? I would like to think that being a teacher, I do or at least have in the past. But what about others? What about other teachers? People in the community? Maybe people who read my blogs? I may never know, just as those that have made me reflect may never know the effect they have had on me.

One thing I do hope, is that the lady in the pink coat wearing the backpack, can teach me to be on a schedule each day! I may never know how she is able to be at the same spot at the same time each day. However, maybe a good goal for me is to create a "meeting" point for her and I-a house or a tree on our route-a place between here and work that will keep me at ease, knowing I will arrive at work in enough time to prepare for my day.

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