So, let’s get the big questions over with quickly:
Still on strike? Yes. (23 days on the picket line now . . . )
Still sane? Debatable.
Still celebrating? Indeed. When I can’t do this, it is really bad.
This week I celebrate the small and big acts of kindness that have helped me get through, helped me smile and helped me feel gratitude to the wonderful people in my life – some friends and some strangers.
In no particular order (and I am sure I have missed a few), here are the kind gestures that I treasured this week.
- A very dear friend took me for lunch at her son’s restaurant. Delicious food, impeccable service and a lovely few hours of conversation and connecting.
- My husband gets up every morning and makes me strong coffee, even on the days when my morning starts much earlier than his.
- Another teacher that I actually first met on twitter has been sharing some wonderful insight and optimism with me this week. I even have permission to call her at 4 a.m. if I can’t sleep with worry over all of this and she will “talk me through” it. Wow.
- I get almost daily Luna kisses from this beautiful dog (pictured above) as she is out for her daily walk past our school/picket line. Isn’t she gorgeous? I appreciate that her owners always say goodbye with some variation of this, “Well, nice to see you but hope we don’t see you again.” While it is wonderful to connect with new people (and animals), these circumstances are far from ideal.
- I have another favourite visitor that walks by and stops for a visit everyday. This one is of the little person variety and is usually accompanied by Mom or Dad and adorable baby brother. We talk books, brothers and various other things. She arrived one day in a gorgeous outfit (from India I think) that her Dad had bought for her. I commented that she looked much more amazing than me and that I would love a similar outfit in my size. The next day she looked me up and down and said, “I think today that you look much better than I do.” I have carried this wonderfully genuine compliment with me all week!
- I am especially grateful to one man who walked by with his dog and at our request “stayed near” for an extra 5 minutes. It was yesterday on the picket line early in the morning. Nobody was around and our line consisted of three women. We asked for this “support” because behind him we spotted a gentleman walking down the sidewalk who had made some nasty comments to us back in June. While he stayed with his dog and talked, the man walked right by. Unfortunately, after he left, the “unpleasant” man returned. We had to endure an ugly three minutes or so of verbal aggression and physical intimidation. It was bad. But, our “people” rallied around us and now we will have a male teacher on the early morning shift next week (if we are still out . . . ) In all of this, the kindness of strangers shone above the cruelty of one.
Thank you to Ruth Ayres, for the inspiration and her Celebration Link up that she hosts each week. I treasure this #celebratelu community. Despite our busy days, time is always found to share what we celebrate. It’s like passing a virtual gratitude stone!