The teacher at the dinner party
man, a CEO, decided to explain the problem with education.
He argued, 'What's a kid going to learn from someone who decided his
best option in life was to become a teacher?'
He reminded the other dinner guests what they say about teachers:
'Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.'
To emphasize his point he said to another guest; 'You're a teacher,
Bonnie. Be honest. What do you make?'
Bonnie, who had a reputation for honesty and frankness replied, 'You
want to know what I make?'
(She paused for a second, then began...)
'Well, I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I make a C+ feel like the Congressional Medal of Honor.
I make kids sit through 40 minutes of class time when their parents
can't make them sit for 5 without an I-Pod, Game Cube or movie rental.
You want to know what I make?' (She paused again and looked at each and
every person at the table.)
''I make kids wonder.
I make them question.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them have respect and take responsibility for their actions.
I teach them to write and then I make them write. Keyboarding isn't
I make them read, read, read.
I make them show all their work in math. They use their God-given
brain, not the man-made calculator.
I make my students from other countries learn everything they need to
know in English while preserving their unique cultural identity.
I make my classroom a place where all my students feel safe.
I make my students stand, placing their hand over their heart to say
the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, One Nation Under God, because we
live in the United States of America .
I make them understand that if they use the gifts they were given, work
hard, and follow their hearts, they can succeed in life.'
(Bonnie paused one last time and then continued.)
'Then, when people try to judge me by what I make, with me knowing
money isn't everything, I can hold my head up high and pay no attention
because they are ignorant... You want to know what I make?
I MAKE A DIFFERENCE. What do you make Mr. CEO?'
His jaw dropped, he went silent.
One of my college professors shared this story with us. It's amazing when moments in life make me reflect back to this story of what really matters in life. Sure, teaching is not my career right now but I can read this from a mother's perspective. Our job as a mother matters. When people get all high and mighty about status or money, I can't help but get the last laugh. You know why?..... because they have forgotten the true meaning of life and what really matters. I'm sorry but a Coach purse or being able to go on vacation every month is not going to get you far in life. Money does not buy happiness. Money can destroy a person's morals and ethics and it's sad when you see someone spiral into this pit of "money brings happiness". I have seen it happen time and time again.
The other day I got a tad jealous seeing someone gloat about all they have. The first few thoughts that came to mind were: "Have they ever had to wonder how they were going to get their next meal?" "Do they not understand how they are coming across to others?" I have been around many people that are struggling with finding jobs, getting food for their families, and they are living one day at a time. And yet, this person is rubbing it in front of everyone's faces that she has more and doesn't flinch when purchasing high-end items. Don't get me wrong, I am not the money police, nor am I here to judge. The purpose of this post is to remind myself and others that something is missing here.... When this person loses all that money, what then will she have? Money cannot be a replacement with dealing with your emotions, money cannot be the answer to happiness, money cannot be your god. When it does become any of those then you have lost everything. You have nothing.
The other night, I was talking to my husband about this subject. Without hesitation, I told Dale that I wish all rich people were like Stan Lee.
Live a life of purpose. I may not have much, but I am reminded every day of what I do have. Every day I wake up and want to make a difference. As a stay-at-home mom I don't get very many opportunities to reach out to others in the way I want. My purpose right now is to raise my child into a man and teach him the responsibilities of life. To respect others. To help those who are in far worse shape than him. To live humbly and selflessly. To life a life full of love. Money can be used for good or for bad. Money can be hurtful to yourself and others. Money is not the key to happiness. These are the things I hope to teach my son. In a world that is already full of pop culture, I hope that I can instill the same values that my mama taught me.