The Child on The Bank

1 Dec

I have not been blogging because I started teaching. And I have so many stories to tell. But they are not my stories alone, so they are not mine to share. But this, I will say.

Every day, there is a child, sometimes children, that are out of my reach. And it is like watching someone caught in the rapids of a flood-swollen river. Waters treacherous, cold, and murky. And from the bank, from a bridge, from a raft, sometimes from waist-deep in the water, I just can’t get to them, can’t pull them in where it is safe. And in their choices and circumstances, I find my heart breaking into a million tiny pieces.

Every day too, there is another child, sometimes children. And the angle is just right, my reach just long enough that I can catch their hands, pull them in, and we get back to shore. Winded and exhausted, but triumphant. Safe on shore, we shake off the chill and laugh at our victory over the rapids. Untouchable in that moment. Invincible.

All this I expected.

But every day, there I also another child. This one stands on the bank, and while I am in the middle of the panic, the reaching, the worrying, the trying? This child grabs me. This child steadies me so I can reach a little farther, try a little harder to reach the child caught in the current.

And sometimes, the child in the water yesterday is the child on the bank today. Sometimes, those we rescue, rescue us.

This blessing, not given gently, is what makes me walk in every morning with renewed hope.

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9 Responses to “The Child on The Bank”

  1. bendlecBen the cat December 1, 2011 at 9:53 pm #

    Thank you. You not only write beautifully, but eloquently and evocatively. I am gratified that you are out there, helping and being helped. YOu are fully human.

  2. colleenpence December 1, 2011 at 10:19 pm #

    I thank God for teachers like you Dawn. Come to think of it, I thank God for people like you. I’m proud to call you my friend.

  3. Debi P. December 1, 2011 at 10:31 pm #

    And somedays, Dawn, that child is the parent. And yesterday, that parent was me. I am truly blessed to call you friend.

  4. Kami Huyse December 1, 2011 at 11:32 pm #

    Wow lady, this was really a wonderful snapshot. Really miss your writing. 🙂

  5. mcwhittle December 2, 2011 at 6:46 am #

    I love your insights. I too find it hard to write and work in the real world… there just isn’t enough time for everything…you write so beautifully however, please continue to find a moment or two so that we can gaze thru the window into your world.

  6. poprice December 2, 2011 at 9:44 am #

    What a fantastic post.

    As difficult as it is with a new job, do try to write down as much of this stuff down as you can while the experience is so fresh. Your newbie perspective and unique take on things make a powerful combination. I think it was Jane Jacobs who said once that we see more when we are new to a place because the tiny screws on our glasses haven’t been fully adjusted yet to the new. Something like that. Anyway, jot it down on paper, your laptop, a napkin… whatever it takes.

    The world *needs* your stories, my friend.

  7. *Just Fran* December 2, 2011 at 11:12 pm #

    This is why you are a fabulous teacher. Love you.

  8. Icy Blue Studio December 4, 2011 at 11:39 pm #

    I sit here with my laptop thinking it’d be great to have a fabulously eloquent comment, but I am just the usual: overwhelmed and wishing you were next door to give you a huge hug and tell you how much I love you. This will be printed out and put on my desk wall. Thank you Dawn!

  9. Dixie December 5, 2011 at 3:41 pm #

    Awesome! God bless you!

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