One Sunflower

one purple crayon – pass it on

on November 13, 2012

In May of 2011 she tearfully announced to us, her fellow staff members, that she was opting to transfer to the middle school.  She would miss us but was excited about the challenge of moving to a new grade level, new staff, new building.

Being the preschool teacher in this building, I taught at the opposite end of the school from this 5th grade teacher.  But I came to know this lively, small statured young woman to be a powerhouse in our staff meetings.  She was  someone who often sought clarification as we made decisions and I admired her as an exemplary professional. (Another memorable trait was that she occasionally wore plastic tiaras on special occasions or when she needed cheering up.)

Last week I bumped into this teacher.  She had moved to a new school once again and had returned to teaching 5th grade.  Grinning at me, she put her arms on my shoulders and thanked me for the motivational note I had passed to her when she left our building.  “I don’t know if you remember what you said but I keep it posted and in fact, I was just looking at it today.”

“And,” she added,  “I still have the purple crayon.”

I don’t remember what I wrote in my note.  But I do remember tucking in a purple crayon, a reference to that endearing children’s book.  On the day I bumped into her, it was me who needed a purple crayon, as I was feeling a bit blue about how my year is shaping up.  So her gratitude was a reminder I can write my own destiny – purple crayon in hand, or not.


10 responses to “one purple crayon – pass it on

  1. Jenny Anderson says:

    Thank you. I’ve got a fist full of them today. I have a feeling I will need to pass them around.

  2. Oh, I love this. I actually got some goosebumps! Isn’t it funny how the right people are there when you need them? You were there in words for her years ago and now she was here for you! Loved your color association too (you were feeling blue and needing the purple crayon). And your last line – perfection: ” . . . a reminder I can write my own destiny – purple crayon in hand, or not.”

  3. I think that we all need that reminder every once in a while.

  4. Betsy says:

    This is such a sweet slice. I love that you wrote her some encouraging words that have stayed with her and that in some ways they circled back to you when you needed them. Even though you don’t remember the words, the kindness rings through.
    Draw yourself some destiny!

  5. Lynnelle says:

    All it takes is a kind word on a hard to help us realize that’s what we really needed to hear. Hope your Wed is better!

  6. Like you do so well, Amelia, beautifully said. I appreciate your serendipitous story & for the inspiration. It is special since it is that goodness you put out into the world returned to you when you needed it. Thanks for passing it on again! Lately, with my selling & cleaning out & moving, I need that purple crayon very much.

  7. That purple crayon should be in every teacher’s “feel good” file.
    Thanks for reminding us that we all need support at one time or another.

  8. Donna Smith says:

    Ah…when you least expect it…Loved the “what goes around, comes around” moment.

  9. Jenny Anderson says:

    This newsletter came to me and I immediately thought of you!

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