Highlights from Brookwood Elementary

I try to write snippets of things that touched me or made me laugh at school visits so that I don’t forget them on Facebook a lot. I think I am going to begin to make them blog entries here to keep a better record of them. (Ya never know when a book idea could surface, right?) So yesterday had some wonderful moments – I talked to kindergarten through second grade.

And you know it is going to be a GREAT visit when you get a gift in the first 2 minutes:

Kindergarten Boy: “Miss Michelle, you are the BEST author I have EVER met!!”
Me: “Oh, my gosh! Really?!?! That is so sweet! How many have you met?”
Kindergarten Boy: “Just you!”

First Grade Girl that I had to kneel down because she wanted to whisper it to me: “Miss Michelle, thank you for coming and showing your amazing pictures to us. And also, you are so beautiful.”
Me whispering back: “You are so sweet. You know, you are very beautiful, too.”
Her smile could have lit up the room if it was dark.

Kindergarten Boy: “How old are you??”
Me: “39, I’ll be 40 in December.”
The whole room audibly GASPS. And I hear all across the room. “That’s how old MY MOM is!!” This happens almost EVERY visit. For some reason this fact never ceases to blow their minds and it makes me laugh out loud every single time.

And for the SAD but true files:
Second Grade Girl: “Miss Michelle, would you say your stories are examples of personification?”
(Side Note: I am not, nor have ever been, an English major. It is perhaps embarrassing that someone who can now be considered a ‘professional’ writer does not know what terms like personification mean, or even at times, where the comma may or may not go. I admit this sadness. I froze for a moment at her question.)
Me: …….blink…….blink……(In my head, “Oh LORD! In front of the teachers! In front of the LIBRARIAN! They will all know what a complete SHAM I am!!”) “Well, do YOU think I write with personification?”
Second Grade Girl: Well, you have Lucy fly to Rome. Then she rides a motorcycle. That pig can skydive and fly a plane. Yes, yes I think you do.”
Me, HOPING she is right: “Yep! I do use personification in my writing!”…..Finally I look at the teacher willing to reveal my ignorance if I had not already done so, “Who prompted this child!! I have not had more than one cup of coffee yet”
P.S. I asked the librarian later what Personification it. The little girl was right. PHEW.

And finally in a question that touched my heart so deeply and I cannot stop thinking about how beautiful our exchange was:
Kindergarten Boy: “Miss Michelle, I have a question about a Magic Life.”
Me: “Yes?”
Kindergarten Boy: “When the person living a magic life dies, what happens to their magic? Does it go with them? Or does it stay here with us and someone else gets to have their magic?”
Me: “Well, what I think happens, and this is just what Miss Michelle thinks, is that once we have our Magic Life here, we have a responsibility to share it with others. As many as we can, so that really, we are already giving our Magic to others while we are here so that as many people as possible begin to see they can have Magic Lives too. Then when we are not here anymore, our Magic is still here and continues to make more Magic Lives even after we are gone. But, I do think, somehow, we get to take some of it with us too.”
His smile seemed to tell me he liked that answer – I think the whole room did.

Gratitudefullness? Gratefulocity? Maybe they are new words for what I feel after these visits.