No Words

imageWriting anything at all has been the last thing on my mind today.  At the very least I thought I would have to say that I have no words with which to write.  The little words and thoughts that usually crowd my head are gone.  They left with a WHOOSH that emptied my brain and hit me in the heart and the gut, leaving an empty ache.  It’s impossible now to write about the ridiculous number of times I pressed SNOOZE on my alarm this morning or the sassy, but sweet comment one of the students made in class today.  I can’t even remember the little something that I found funny enough this morning to consider for my writing.  Because sometimes a seismic event happens in the middle of an ordinary day and shakes the small moments right off the map.  This was that day.

The text came in the middle of the morning, in the middle of the busy hustle of book groups and sticky notes.  A friend had died.  A life was lost, and the impact of that unimaginable thought shook my world.  I couldn’t move, couldn’t think–and then all I could do was think.  I thought of the lives changed by this loss.  Forever.  Irrevocably.  And all my words left me.

Hours later I realize that I do have words.  All the big words are still there–love, kindness, laughter, prayer, friendship, family.  The small words of normal life are just noise, but the big words shine through and refuse to be ignored.  The people in our lives and our relationships with them are precious.  There is nothing more important.  Treasure them.  Laugh together.  Forgive each other.  Choose kindness.  Delight in love.  Don’t wait–reach out.  Don’t take any of this for granted because we aren’t promised even another minute together.

There are people with tears in their eyes today.  Some of them are close to me, but there are more than we know who need the loving support of friends and family.  Take care of them when you can and be grateful for everyone in your life.  Even a small friendship or connection can mean the world to someone else.

While I was in a kindergarten room this morning, a small friend held my hand and said “Teacher…don’t cry.” while another gave me a sticky note with hearts to put on my shirt.  They showed me where to find my words again.

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  1. Leigh Anne · March 3, 2016

    My heart aches for you! But “Teacher…don’t cry.” Instead celebrate the life of your friend and cherish the memories and write….yes, write because the words will be there. They alway are, waiting on us to find them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dana Murphy · March 3, 2016

    I am so sorry for your loss. You captured your emotions so well here – how it hit you so unexpectedly right in the middle of an ordinary day. You did find the words. The only words I have now are: I am so sorry.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. C.Crouch · March 3, 2016

    Sometimes we need no words to express how we feel. Like the precious little post it notes of hearts you received from a loving student. This line was so profound and powerfully descriptive ..”Because sometimes a seismic event happens in the middle of an ordinary day and shakes the small moments right off the map.”
    So sorry for your loss.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lisa R · March 3, 2016

    Thank you for sharing your story. What courage you showed to keep on teaching. So sorry to hear about your loss.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Katy Collins · March 3, 2016

    What a beautiful expression of your “no words” day and what a beautiful tribute you left to your friend here for us in the way of reminders of what’s important in life. Your introduction and description of your “no word” state left me speechless: “They left with a WHOOSH that emptied my brain and hit me in the heart and the gut, leaving an empty ache.” I am so so glad that you found love and support in your day from students and others. Thank you for the reminder that life is so precious. I’m so sorry for your loss. Sending thoughts and prayers tonight…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. payanar100 · March 3, 2016

    You described so well that moment when your world stops for a little bit. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your friend. My condolences to you and to the family of your friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Amanda · March 3, 2016

    Sifting through the 270+ comments, I’m always amazed at how serendipitous it seems when I find the posts I do. Dear Teacher, these past two days have found me in a funeral home supporting a grieving friend, and as it turns out a current student and a few former students. I am so very sorry for your loss and yet so very grateful for the words you found to share your experience. These seismic events are what bond us through tears shed or words of comfort softly spoken. Thank so much for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. daywells · March 3, 2016

    So very sorry for your loss – and what a difficult way and place to learn of it. Your writing is lovely. So glad you came here even though your heart is aching.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. writintime · March 3, 2016

    Your ‘no words’ become important words and they touched me. Keep raising your voice.


  10. cflathers · March 3, 2016

    So sorry for your loss and what you are going through at the moment. I do however love how you wrote about this, I can just see that little child coming up to you and saying “Teacher don’t cry” Sometimes it is the student that teaches the teacher.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Maria · March 3, 2016

    So sorry. But thank you for the words you found to remind us of the importance of life. Thoughts and prayers to you.


  12. carriegelson · March 3, 2016

    Little ones teach us so much. That paper of hearts is a huge gift. Sorry for your loss.


  13. mollykirkblog · March 3, 2016

    Thank you for sharing today. And thank you for being real, with your students and with us. Teacher, it’s okay to cry.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Erika Victor · March 4, 2016

    Oof. So sorry for your loss, but grateful you have the memories and the words. It is important for our students to see us as people too. Your slice really touched me.


  15. Kristi Lonheim (@lonheim) · March 4, 2016

    Sorry for your loss. I hope in the days to come you are able to share with us some of what made this particular person life’s special to you. May both the big words and the small words help you to process your memories and your grief.


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