The awesomely, amazing Emily came over tonight and we sat on the couch, watched television and talked. Even though it is currently Camp NaNoWriMo not one word was written between us. We did talk about writing but that is as close as it came to words hitting paper.

I was telling Emily about a thought I had about a teacher when I was in the ninth grade. Most everyone knows that I do not remember much of my childhood and when I went to school. I lost those memories when I was in the coma. Every once in a while a piece of a memory will come to me and I had one that I wanted to share with Emily and you all.

When I was in junior high and high school, I wrote for the school newspaper and took a journalism class. Back then, I didn’t know that my life goal was to be a published writer. The teacher of the journalism class was also the teacher in charge of the newspaper. I am not going to mention names, but if you went to school with me, you will know who I am talking about. (Think gray hall)

I had a paper due in my journalism class and we were allowed to choose any topic to write on. I chose to write about the Ford Thunderbird. The teacher did not even read my paper, she slapped a big F on my paper and told me that writing about a car was not a proper topic for a girl.

The same teacher, would pass out assignments for each of us to research and write an article for the paper. For the entire time on the paper, she would give me topics to research, but not once did she ever print anything I had written.

I wonder where I would be with my writing if my interest in writing had been encouraged instead of being discouraged.

When I went back to college in my 30’s I was encouraged by three professors in the English department. Each of these professors took the time to lift me up and give me the tools that I should have had learned back in high school. It took me a while to believe those professors because back in high school, I was told that I could not write. Why would you tell a student that her writing was terrible? Why would a teacher choose to not help a student? I feel that the journalism teacher completely failed at the one job she was supposed to do. She was a teacher, so why did she choose not to teach?

You may wonder why I am writing this blog post. I just want to give a little bit of advice. I would hope that my blog would encourage you to encourage those around you. It just takes a simple smile and tell them you are proud of whatever it is they are doing. If you can help someone who is struggling, please offer to help.

If my teacher had offered me help instead of squashing my attempts, who knows where I would be today.

Let’s make tomorrow and every day after tomorrow a day to encourage others instead of tearing them down.

I pray your life is filled with love, happiness and encouragement.

Peggy Eileen

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