Preschool: All I remember 'bout this, other than a few movie screen slides whizzin' by in my brain of random images, is that I seemed to wanna bypass the tike toys and trek my way up the big kid slide...the take away, go big or go home.
Kindergarten: Honestly, this is a complete blur. But, I do have a memory at this age of standin' on my Daddy's boots as I held onto his legs, wishin' I could see through eyes at his level.
1st Grade: So, this is weird considerin' today's society, but what comes to me is that I had a very confused thought when seein' my short haired female teacher with a refined 80's punk hairdo. Today I recollect she's of the likeness of Princess Di, but that was a first for me back then and where I grew up.
2nd Grade: The Challenger disaster...from then on, I was afraid of the unknown beyond our skies.
3rd Grade: I was introduced to my teacher's disabled daughter, which impacted me to reach out in lifelong service to others of our community.
4th Grade: How could I forget the teacher that thought she'd shake some sense into me?
5th Grade: Time for the coolest teacher award. So, I should've gotten in trouble for this, but apparently I was let off the hook as the class clown who caught the attention of everyone by hoppin' up onto my chair and desk, hikin' up my britches and pushin' up my huge mauve colored coke bottle glasses to do my best Steve Urkel impersonation sayin', "Got any cheeeeeeese?" and "Did I do that?" I've never lived this story down and my hub still tries to catch a glimpse of that silly girl - not today!
6th Grade: I'll always remember the 1st boy to ever tell me he loves me. RIP
7th Grade: I got my first taste of the racism surroundin' me when it literally hit me in the face. Walkin' the hall on the way from my locker to my next class while I was gabbin' to my friends, I hear a slur shouted my direction and as I turn toward the voice I see a blur of black congregants standin' aside a gal who's swingin' a backpack into the side of my face. What do ya do but get caught up in a brawl at that point? They didn't expect that from meek li'l me, but I had respect from then on. Needless to say, it was a long day to the principal's office, a long week of school counselin', and a long wait for the school year to be done already.
8th Grade: The rigorous diagnostics to test the range of my voice, especially musically, after bein' referred to speech therapy for my unusually high pitched sing song tone. What an art teacher noticed revealed other giftings to pursue.
9th Grade: A true series of unfortunate events. A guy's interest grew into obsession which led to stalkin' that ended up in a fit of violence causin' me to suffer concussion, and what's thought to be nerve damage effectin' me to this day, stemmin' from his abuse.
10th Grade: I had the best group of friends that showed me their love by surprisin' me with a birthday party they put together for me durin' homeroom - complete with homemade banner, a birthday cake they pitched in to get me from the grocery down the road from school, and li'l trinkets from a store in the strip.
11th Grade: The chance to go an academy for the arts, science & technology where I would double major in Health Medical Science & Theatrical Dance Art for 2 years...what a fun and excitin' time!
12th Grade: Standin' up for myself against a guy 3x my size that I wasn't gonna let put me out, as had happened before, and havin' the backin' of my parents, as it was in defense. No guy will ever call me a *!tch for denyin' his sexual advances.
So, how have I grown out of these memories?
I have a kindness for those around me. I'm curious 'bout my world. I've learned to express myself through creativity. I'm resilient and fight back against that which tries to knock me down. I am thoughtful towards others and have an empathy for others' feelings. I've always tried to see the positive in every situation and strived to be my best self for others to see. I like to be an encouragement to others. I live with passion. I've fought to resist negative pressure. I make an effort, no matter how tired I am. I take the time to peacefully solve problems. I listen to both my head and my heart. I don't live to be alone, and love interactin' with people. I isten to those which need me to lend an ear...not just flap my jowls with unsolicited advice. I make it a point to be a good friend by checkin' in on those I've met, to show that I care and will be here for them so they don't feel as alone as I have and/or do. 'Cause of how I love, it's hard for me, but I refrain from invadin' personal space and wait to know I'll be received...but, I love hugs! I like to bring comfort to others as best as I can. My first initial should stand for Communication. Have I said I like to help others yet? I embrace all types of people and show them the same LOVE and FORGIVENESS that God's shown me. Something that isn't a plus is that I ain't witty and am slow at catchin' onto a joke, as I take my time to be thoughtful and am quite literal. I express myself most through music and song. I have a very vivid imagination. I love to solve problems. It's funny, though, 'cause however bad I was at math, I am a numbers person. I like knowin' the ins and outs of how things work. I embody the extremes of prissy girly-girl and major tomboy. I will volunteer for what will help my fellow man, but most especially, animals.
So, what 'bout y'all? What can you learn and share 'bout your personal growth from thinkin' fondly of a memory that comes to you from your grade school years? You'd be surprised the story you can make out for yourself based on your realizations. Have fun reminiscin'. I hope I've taken ya back a li'l bit to see how far you've come.
This song couldn't be more fittin', especially since it's sung by the Glee cast durin' their school days. Enjoy their rendition of a Beatle's classic.
Copyright September 10th, 2019 owned by C.L. Chapps