Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Believe

Some journals, mine included, have melancholy themes from time to time. Actually, they can be downright depressing. We have all had difficulties to overcome in our lives. We will probably have more challenges ahead of us. Sometimes, what a person is looking for is someone to believe in them. Sometimes what it takes is for you to believe in yourself, when it seems that no one else will.

However, there are those times in our lives where someone stops to take a moment and say that they care, that they believe. Such a time occurred when I was 15. I had decided to leave home. No, I didn't runaway. But, I was running - away from the life that I felt like I couldn't tolerate another day. Luckily, my 20 year old brother, Andy, was kind enough to take me in. Leaving meant moving to yet another state and school. I didn't think it really mattered, because I didn't think anyone cared. But, I was wrong.

On my last day of school, my English teacher handed me an envelope with just my name written on it. What it contained was a letter and a poem that she had written for me - to me. The letter is dated 3-18-83. It's been over 20 years since I received that envelope, but I still pull it out from time to time. Sometimes to lift my own spirits when I am feeling down, and sometimes to share with others who aren't doing so well themselves. It's a testament to all the people out there who think their life doesn't matter. Sometimes, a few words that you share with someone, can make all the difference in the world, in the world of a child, a friend, or maybe even a stranger.

I don't think this particular teacher knew the magnitude of what she was doing for me when she handed me that envelope many years ago. Her small gesture gave me the strength to become the woman I am today. Her small gesture made me believe, because she showed me that someone else believed in me. So, I share it now with you, because I believe in you!

First the letter:

Dear Robbie,

   You are going on a perilous journey - like Ishmael, Huck Finn, Holden and me.  Every change in your life is a step towards growing up and becoming more aware of who you are in the world.  You are especially special and don't you ever forget it.  God never made any junk - only people who, if they try, can become complete.  Your journey will not be without pain, regret and fear, but I am excited for you.  You will be fine because you are fine.  I have faith that life will be good for you because you have a strong conscience and a positive attitude.  Be aware of your sorrows for they will make your happinesses even greater.

Now the poem:

I want you to know, when things go wrong;
I want you to know that - all along.
Someone remembers, someone cares
Whatever the load - your burden shares.

I want you to know that come what will
In the deepest vale, on the highest hill
Whatever the rest may say or do
I want you to know that my faith is true.

I want you to know when far apart
When I cannot speak to you - heart to heart
That the things I say to you now are so -
And so, forever - I want you to know.

I want you to know in the after years
In time of sorrow, in time of tears.
Whether the plains or the sea divide
I am still standing your soul beside.

The way is far - the voice is dumb
I cannot speak and I cannot come.
And - maybe my love will not help you so.
But - if it will - well, I want you to know

~~~~~ Virginia W. ~~~~~

 

20 comments:

ondinemonet said...

Robbie...I am so glad I found your journal...this was very much needed by me tonight...and I expect by others who stop by. You are quite special! :) Always, Carly :)

babyshark28 said...

ahhh. that is very special :)
sooo thoughtful of that teacher.  sometimes we do not realize the magnitude of what we say.  Either in a painful way or a positive one. I am very glad you have those words to cheer you, or encourage you when you are down.  Sometimes, all it takes in life for someone...is to let them know that there not alone.
great entry..thanks for sharing robbie. :)

queenz43 said...

(((((Robbie))))) This is certainly a treasure that you have here and thank you so much for sharing it with the rest of us. I know personally that even a small showing of support can make a HUGE difference in the way we feel about ourselves as well as what our eyes see as we take in the things that make up life. Thank God for those that are "Aware" enough to hear us even if we never utter a word. I really, really, appreciated this Robbie. See ya next time,
~RC~

dymphna103 said...

You were given something that to date you treasure.  Manytimes we are given things and we take them for granted.  I am proud of the fact you have kept this with you.  We are on a journey and continue it everyday of our life.  John

queenz43 said...

Robbie, came back to say congratulations on making the top 5!!! Very,very, well deserved. ~RC~

tlynn91 said...

Robbie~Such a wonderful thing to share...very uplifting and they may be just the words that someone needs to hear today.  Congratulations on the Editor's Pick!  You so deserve it!  ~Peachy

lucylouladybug said...

She indeed gave you a rare gift.  Thanks for sharing it, because I'm one of those melancholy people too.  It does help when you know that you are not alone.
Love you, Penny

karensull12 said...

Robbie, this brought tears to my eyes.  I have always believed that if you have or find just one person in your life who takes the time to show you love and understanding (and it does not have to be a parent), that it can make all the difference in your life.  I have heard story after story about people whose parents didn't quite cut it in that department, but somewhere along the line, someone else picked up the slack and gave them the sense of self and well-being that made it possible to move through life without debilitating anger...to move forward, instead of always looking back.  Your story proves it again.

deabvt said...

AWWWWW!!!   So pretty, Robbie!
Vince

rbushu said...

I'm glad Virginia was there for you when you needed her, and also your brother for taking you in. Now you share that gift with others. That is the true gift. To love and be loved. Whatever she saw at 15 has blossomed into something truly magnificent.

krobbie67 said...

RBUSHU: You’re kind words are soooo freakin nice. Now, quit it before I get all mushy! ;-)

VINCE: Thanks! On her behalf, I guess ??? ;-)

KAREN: Sheesh, I didn’t mean to bring tears to your eyes but maybe it’s the reflection of resemblance? I am very grateful for all the people who have touched my life. Even the bad ones! All of it is what made me who I am today and I wouldn’t want it any other way! :::::hugs:::::

PENNY: I’m gla to hear that Penny! Well, we are all melancholy from time to time. It’s just part of life, yah know. ;-)

PEACHY: Thanks so very much! Your entry about the little girl made me think of this. There’s a lot of those little girls out there and some times something that you think is just a small little gesture can make all the difference in their lives. I was one of them once and look what it did for me. :-)

JOHN: A crazy journey indeed! I’m glad that I kept it too! I’ve moved so much and it’s so easy to misplace stuff but I’ve kept all my cards and letters that I’ve received over the years.

RC: No, thank YOU!!! Your words are so very special and always a pleasure to read! I look forward to next time! Just didn’t think it would be three times today!!! But, you’re so sweet to keep coming back. THANKS!

BABYSHARK: Thanks Sharky! Sticks and stones may break bones but they heal. But, words stay with you forever.

CARLY: Thank you! If you were the only one to read it, then it was well worth the while to share. I’m glad it helped you in some small way. That’s what it’s all about.

musenla said...

You had a special mentor and friend in your teacher, Robbie.  For her to acknowledge and confirm how special she sees you only means that she had all the faith and confidence in your ability to prevail and succeed.

Thanks for sharing the poem with us, also. It is truly inspiring!

s0ngbird1962 said...

Wow, what a wonderful teacher you had.  Do you think you could still find her?  Maybe drop her a line and let her know how much this letter and her encouragement meant to you?    

quroboros said...

Wow, how inspiring.  I can't believe this teacher went out of her way to reassure, instill confidence & tell you all this so openly.  Quite a gal!  I wonder how many other young lives would be changed for the better if more people responded to a troubled youth like she did.
In reading journals, I'm constantly running across those penned by depressed, confused, even disturbed youngsters.  I read one yesterday where every other entry was about contemplating suicide.. it's frightening, but we all dealt w/those feelings growing up.  I wish every youngster had someone like your teacher to show them a path.  ¤Holly

indigosunmoon said...

Aww Robbie...<sniff sniff>  You had to go and put a Virginia W. Poem in.  Dang it...where's the tissues!

goldenchildnc said...

Now see, THAT is what teaching is really all about. To actually take the time and care not just to shove facts down a student's throat, but to encourage them on their way and into their future! What a wonderful teacher that was!

withoutlife said...

its amazing, i have felt all day, most of every day a deep sorrow with in me. and i do belive in that poem and thats what usually keeps me going through my days. i needed some words to help my family, even though we are to gether we all feel the same way and i believe that this poem is going to help us get closer so from the bottom of my heart i thank god for you.

bridgetteleigh75 said...

That was just beautiful.  And what a tribute to you!  Too bad we didn't all have teachers like that.  

krobbie67 said...

MUSE: Thanks! Funny, at the time I didn’t think I was any more unique to her then another student. And, maybe I wasn’t. But, she took the time to show she cared which made a tremendous difference in my life.

SONGBIRD: I actually ran into her a while back when I was there visiting my brother. It’s been a while but and I don’t know how specific I was but I did thank her.

HOLLY: I too wish that troubled youth could find someone, anyone in their life that can show them a path out of their trouble. Teachers have my respect. It must be difficult to see all that they do day after day and not feel helpless. I guess this is my way of showing how they do have an impact, even if they don’t see the immediate difference.

INDIGOSUNNMOON: Sorry! I didn’t intend on causing sniffles. This was her poem by the way. I just didn’t want to infringe on her privacy by including her full name.

GREGG: I think the facts are important. She definitely taught a lot. Every author she referenced, I read in one or another of her classes. But, teachers do have so much more of an impact than I think they even realize sometimes.

krobbie67 said...

WITHOUTLIFE:  Thanks! I’m glad to hear it helped someone.

BRIDGETT: Yeah! Some teachers really get how important they are, or at least can be.