Friday, November 5, 2010

Day 20 Of Forty Days Of Gratitude

Today I am grateful to know that I helped a young person make a positive change in his life.

I have a young man in my class who is dealing with incredibly difficult challenges. His parents are both dying. I don't want to get into the specifics in order to protect the young man's privacy.

He was going to another school last year and he was a basketball star there. If you googled his name you would see that he is a very talented young man. He moved here and for various reasons he is not eligible to play basketball. This is sad because I believe for him, basketball was his lifeline through trying times.

He's been spinning out of control with his behavior and associating with people who are going to drag him down.

In the beginning of the year he felt that I hated him because I gave him D-Hall for being late. I would also get on him when he wasn't' doing his work. He felt that Mrs. F hated him because she'd tell him not to run in the hall.

That has all changed now and he sees me as more of an ally who is trying to help him graduate. Today I showed him that he was passing but if he completed his test his grade would go up higher. He said he would and I hope he does.

I then told him how Mrs. F and I were in his corner cheering him on and that we were so proud of him but that in the end it's going to be all about him. He is going to be the second person in his family to graduate and I told him that life was a lot like basketball. It didn't matter who was cheering him on in the sidelines because in the end it's him and only him who can take a shot. His talent and skill will help him through but he's got to put forth the same kind of effort he would on the court.

He looked down and said, "You're right." I asked him about the people he chose for his team and he said, "I've gotten rid of some of those people who were pulling me down." I told him I was very proud of him and he asked if I would write his mom and note about that. I did.

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