Daily Archives: April 24, 2005

On to State

Austin’s calling. For the first time in five years, one of my kids is competing at state. It’s going to be interesting. 🙂
I’m going to pre-plan the trip and the food because this weekend, although a ton of fun, was HORRENDOUS on the calorie counting. I ate and ate and ate. I ran too, but sill, all that food was uncool. It started with the idea that chocolate fixes everything. It’s a motto I live by, but I’m not usually surrounded by quite so much of the stuff.
Cool: I tried on size 12 Gap jeans. Now, I don’t begin to fit in them. They’re probably 10 pounds away at least. BUT, I was able to put them on. I haven’t been able to put on a size twelve in 15 years. That’s pretty amazing.
About as amazing as how many people say I can stop losing weight now. My goal is 30 more pounds. I figure I’ll be around a size 10. The idea of a size 10 makes me one happy camper.
I just want my BMI to read normal. RIght now it’s overweight. That’s GREAT since it started out at obese, but still!
I did my part today to defeat my chocoholic tendencies. Actually, I was a lazy bum most of the day. I was tired and cranky and determined to get my sleep in, and since I was cranky, DH didn’t bug me. 🙂
BUT tonight I ran for 45 minutes. It was glorious. I’ve never really gone running before. In fact, anytime my friends went running and asked me to tag along, I laughed. I tend to fall a lot. Walking and talking at the same time is a sure fire way for me to end up on my butt. But walking tonight wasn’t going to cut it. I just can’t build up the great cardio power or sweat by walking. So I decided to run. It was hard at first, but it got easier over time. It’s definitely addictive. I like the elliptical better, but running will work in a fix.
And the collest thing about running: It sort of frees the brain. I was running, thinking about how strange it was that I was running and suddenly everything was just a little bit brighter, a little bit cooler. I was able to think about what just might be my new favorite book of all time: The Secret Life of Bees. The book is just amazing. It does with language and story and emotion what I hope to one day do. WOW! It’s awesome beyond belief.

On the News: I just heard one of my former students was picked up in the NFL draft. This kid was the most incredible student. He was determined like no other. I’ll never forget sitting in a meeting with him, his mother, his counselor and another counselor. They (the counselors) were trying to talk him out of taking Latin. They told him it was too hard. That he’d run the risk of failing and if he failed, he wouldn’t play football. I was stunned! Most kids would’ve changed their schedule and gone on about their business. Not this kid. He looked at those counselors and politely informed them he was taking Latin and he was going to pass it. His mother told them he was taking Latin and that was that. The counselors weren’t happy, but they didn’t have a choice. They signed him up for Latin.
The thing is, this kid was supposed to be one of the “slow” learners. If red groups would’ve still been around, he would’ve been in the red group even though he didn’t belong there at all. I knew that from day one. The kid had a heart like I’ve never seen. He was a gentle giant who worked and worked and worked at his studies, determined to go to college and make something of himself. His counselors were angry that I talked to his mother before the conference and told her that in my opinion her son could succeed at anything he wanted to succeed at. Perseverance is 1000 times more important than intelligence. How many naturally smart people are sitting around talking about how smart they are but not doing much?
Anyway, turns out the kid wanted to take Latin because he’d heard it would help him on his SATs. He passed Latin. And he had the SAT’s to get into Baylor. And now he’s on to the NFL. That’s special.
I love my job. But sometimes public education drives me nuts. How many other kids have been pushed out of Latin? How many don’t have that strong mother who will sit across from the people who are supposed to be the professionals and tell them under no circumstances will their son be railroaded OUT of getting an education? How many others are told, take the easy way because it’s better for you?
It’s a scary thing to think about. Chances are the counselors have completely forgotten about that meeting over the kid’s schedule the spring between his sophomore and junior year in high school. I hope he hasn’t. And I hope he’ll share his story with others. He had a dream. The dream was a college education. Now he’s got that and the NFL. Wow.