Our mothers are our first teachers. As babies, and then as children and teenagers, we notice everything our mother does - from the way she combs her hair to her favorite food and even the way she answers the phone. My mother used to pick up the phone, take a big breath, and then say "Hello!" with an upnote in her voice. I wish I could hear that "Hello!" today.
Mom's lessons about strength and optimism served me well when my late husband, Scott, was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer in December, 2009, and given 12 months to live. Suddenly, I had to become a full-time caregiver, while working as a teacher and coach and director. We had no children, so that was one less item on my plate; instead, I had the added responsibility of caring for Scott's parents for years, and now I would have to continue that, without Scott's help. The working and caregiving responsibilities for everyone was so difficult, and they required a great amount of juggling on my part. I knew I was "becoming my mother", and that was a good thing. It was because of her strength and her example that I could fulfill all of the responsibilities to my loved ones.
I had to laugh about my older brother, George, telling me that I had "become our mother" after I had symptoms of appendicitis and drove myself to the hospital last October (while my appendix was rupturing.) Although George's funny line was a real compliment to me, I believe it was a bigger compliment to our mother, who lived the example of such a strong woman that I had to become one as well. ( Audrey definitely would have driven herself to the hospital!)
Our mother passed in 2002, just 82 days after our dad. My brothers and I miss them both every single day, and we are all so grateful for the way they taught us and guided our lives.
Happy Mother's Day, Friends! Kiss your mom, and tell her you love her. Write a note to your mom about the great lessons she has shared with you.
How I wish I could hug and kiss my mother one more time!
As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. Rittman Publishing, LLC ®
GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/
Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required reading. Signed copies are available www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics.
I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books. Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self. However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired!
Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom. Check them out! http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/
Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book. I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!
Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl
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