Happy Wednesday! The Insecure Writers’ Group is a group of writers offering motivation and encouragement to all those taking on the challenges of writing. Every month the ISWG sponsors a blog hop where writers can blog about a topic related to overcoming obstacles and exploring various aspects of the writing journey. If you’d like to participate in a future hop you can join here. It’s always a great experience, and I recommend it to anyone who is interested in writing and sharing with other writers.
Every month there is an optional discussion question, and this month the question is the following:
February 2 question – Is there someone who supported or influenced you that perhaps isn’t around anymore? Anyone you miss?
We all have people that we miss who made an impact in some way on our lives. I think that if I wrote about every one of these people the list would be so long it would get really boring/depressing for anyone reading it. So instead I’ll write about someone who influenced my writing. I’m sure she doesn’t know the impact that she had, and I’m almost certain that she doesn’t remember this story. But I do. I remember this teacher, and this day, very well. Let me begin by saying that kids’ brains are like sponges. The things they hear, especially about themselves, tend to stick around for a long time, if not forever. It’s one reason that good teachers are important.
I sat in class one day in 5th grade, waiting for our short stories to be returned. We had written them the week prior, and our teacher had them in her possession to grade. One by one she handed them back. I waited nervously, worried as usual about my grade. I was always pessimistic, expecting that I hadn’t done well. So when the teacher didn’t hand my paper back at all, it seemed to confirm my worst fears. I looked around, upset and embarrassed. Slowly I sunk into my seat, avoiding the teacher’s eyes. I had gotten an F. I was sure of it. She was going to pull me aside after class and talk to me about how badly I had done.
That was when she began to read. And suddenly I realized…she was reading my story! I looked up in amazement, totally confused. It was a short story, so it didn’t take her long to finish it. As she read she smiled slowly, finally lowering the paper as she addressed the class. I watched her, confused.
“That was an amazing story, Winter.” She handed me back my paper, and I made eye contact with her, still in shock. “You are a good writer.” Around me I could hear my classmates whispering and murmuring, but it didn’t matter. I took my story back, my face red, but my heart bursting. The teacher had liked my story. The story that I wrote, she liked it and liked it enough to read it out loud. I never forgot that moment. And I will never forget her.
I haven’t seen her since high school. I moved away from the small town where I grew up, and I haven’t visited since. I hope that she is still teaching. I don’t miss her per say, we weren’t close enough for me to really miss her, but I appreciate her. She made a huge difference in my life, and as silly as it sounds she gave me the confidence to continue to write, even when I felt I should just forget about the whole thing. Her words will ring forever in my head.
She was a big influence for me, and will always be a big influence for me. We often underestimate the impression we make on those around us, and especially on children. It’s a very good reason to always be kind, and to take the time to highlight others’ achievements. You never now how one kind word or deed can shape the trajectory of someone’s life.
How about you? Is there someone who has been instrumental in guiding your writing journey? If so, do you keep in touch with them and do they know how they’ve impacted you?
Wishing you a happy Wednesday surrounded by people who make you feel happy and supported,