Sunday, January 26, 2014

the compliment

my brother has been joking that my blog must be broken because no new posts are showing up. haha. if only I could blame it on technical difficulties! but alas, it's just a loss of creativity and lack of things I feel are worth writing about.

but today I have a little something I want to jot down. something that makes my heart swell with joy. I feel myself so touched that I have to share it.

As you know, I taught English in China for a year. That was back in 2005. Somehow, I managed to keep in touch with one of my students, who was just 7 at the time. I've always been amazed that she has continued to email me over all these years. I mean, she was just a little kid, she's more than doubled in age!

today I got a wonderful email from her (and not just because, after I sent her a recent photo, she said I hadn't changed and still looked young - although it certainly didn't hurt the ego). She told me that she was going to the US for university and how excited she was. She remembered how she was upset as a kid that she had to learn English, but that now she was glad. And then it came: she said that honestly, I was the first teacher that got her interested in learning English.

Wow. This has made my day. No, more than that. I will think of this whenever I feel down, and it will lift my spirits. I am so moved, and so honoured... I don't know if I've ever felt something like this. I inspired someone. I made a difference in her life. of course I'm not taking credit for everything she's accomplished or the path she's taken in the last 9 years, but now I know that back in the beginning, I was able to spark something in her. She always told me that I was her favourite teacher, but I just thought she was being sweet. I guess I didn't realize that I really could have an impact. What an amazing feeling. I hope all teachers strive for this. To motivate someone, to awaken a desire to learn - is there any greater reward for being a teacher?

That and the holidays.

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