We work with people whose brains and bodies are still very much works-in-progress. Even those who seem mature and all ready to bring out of the oven and serve up to the world do not know what story their lives will tell. I have taught 9th graders for twenty years. I love that age. Everything is possible.
This is what I was thinking about when I heard recently that one of my former students, Dianna Agron, who now stars in the show Glee, made it.
Dianna was a wonderful kid to work with. But I have no recollection of her in school plays. She flashes here the same smile she did then. I remember her as a thoughtful kid, but no Hollywood on the horizon, at least not that I knew of.
My point is that our students have these futures, these lives that they are learning to write and preparing to live in our classes. I'm as happy to see Dianna thriving as I am to see Raziel doing well in his real estate business, or Anna in the Air Force in her smart uniform with all her decorations.
This is all pretty personal stuff for me: My teachers no doubt assumed my story was written when I finished high school. 290th out of 310 in my graduating class. No SAT scores. No college applications. Job in printing factory. Classes at community college.
Thank goodness for revision, the ability to see a different life than the one we are living, and the chance to work to make that story come true.