Liz's Letter, April 2008
Hello everyone. I cannot believe it's already April, can you? I know it's a cliché, but time really does fly! Speaking of which, it blows my mind that April just turned 17 today! How is it possible that the little baby I saw born at home, during the freak ice storm, came into this world 17 years ago? It really doesn’t SEEM so long ago! And to think that cute little baby is now your typical teenager! I mean, we get along well, for the most part, but she can have a real attitude. Sometimes, I feel the need to put her attitude in check, usually by giving her a little “zinger.” Like when she said that some guy out there doesn’t know that he’ll marry her someday, and I said “Ignorance is bliss.”
As usual, my work at the school keeps me busy. It seems I am always doing lesson plans, grading, or dealing with “issues.” Sometimes I talk to the real veterans at my school, the teachers who have been at it for 30 years or more, and they all tell me the same thing. The students are different now than they were decades ago. I know I’ve touched on this before, but kids today really are growing up with a sense of entitlement, and I hate to say it, but you really see that attitude in parents, too.
I had a recent incident involving a student who was turning in work that was way too sophisticated to have come from a ten-year-old. I had been assigning little essays, and the vocabulary and handwriting in this girl’s essays were way too grown up. I suspected that one of her parents was doing the assignments for the child, but I needed proof. People are so litigious these days, that our principal is afraid to act unless we have an airtight case. Well, you won’t believe what happened. This same student was out sick for a couple of days. When she returned to class, she had an excuse note from her mother. You guessed it, the handwriting was a perfect match for those essays. Mom was busted! Not that I was happy to have to arrange that meeting (me, parents, principal and child), but it’s better than having the situation go on and on. That’s doing a real disservice to the child.
Still, I have no regrets about my chosen path. There is nothing like the rush I get when a lesson is going well. You can see it on the kids’ faces when they just “get” what I’m teaching them. I swear, it’s like a natural high!
So, by now you know about Anthony and me. We plan to marry. Someday. We are not rushing into our wedding plans. I confess, I love being able to show off the ring on my left ring finger, showing the world that I’m “taken.” And Dee finding that gown in the crawl space was a real stroke of luck. It’s amazing that it was preserved so well and that the drycleaner did such an awesome job restoring the dress. It meant a lot to me that Grandpa Jim said “yes” when I asked if it was okay if I wore it.
Anyway, that’s all that I really want to say about that. I’m very happy about my “news,” but some people are getting me a little bit down by criticizing the way Anthony broached the topic of marriage, how we chose the rings, and even how we shared the news with Francie. It hurts when people are so judgmental during our happy time.