How did you end up in education? Who or what inspired you to teach?
I had some amazing teachers growing up. Like, probably 95% of my teachers were incredible. The other 5% taught me what I don't want to do :)
But the most inspirational, life-altering teacher I had was my 2nd grade teacher, Mrs. Smiley. After the first day of school, (I had to sign the book because I was a bit talkative...), I proclaimed that I hated her and wanted to switch classes. Fast forward a few months and Mrs. Smiley was diagnosed with breast cancer. We had a series of subs as she underwent chemo and radiation. It was the first time I remember knowing that cancer was dangerous (although I'm not sure if I realized it was sometimes deadly). My mom (who is super nice and the best with encouragement) made me write notes to Mrs. Smiley, telling her we were praying for her and thinking about her. At that point, she was my teacher, but not really much more. During her absence, Mrs. Smiley and I kind of became "pen pals". When she was able to return from school, everything was different. I think I respected her and viewed her differently.
Fast forward to today and Mrs. Smiley is like another grandparent to me. She sat with my grandparents at my wedding :). She moved to Utah when I was in 4th grade so I don't get to see her as often as I would like but when she comes to Dallas for checkup appointments, we always get together. She even called me on my first day of teaching (remember, I teach at my old elementary school) to see how it went. She is the best.
So thanks, Mrs. Smiley. You have inspired me more than you know. I hope one day to be that teacher for one of my students. Love you <3