Teacher’s Simple Gesture

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Scan 19Today I give praise for all the people who have lifted me up over the course of my life and there have been MANY! Too many to name for sure, but I do want to single out one–Mrs. Cozette Campbell.

She will most likely not see this post as she is in her 90’s now and as far as I know does not frequent the internet, but I still want to share her name and give praise for her today. (And please rest assured that over the years I have shared my praise with her directly through our written correspondence.)

Mrs. Campbell was my third grade teacher and much to my surprise and delight, she has written to me every year on my birthday and at Christmas for the past 43 years!!! I cannot give due praise for what this simple act of hers has meant to me.

A teacher keeping up with a student for so long is remarkable on it’s own, but additionally, way back in 1970 when this all began, we were from different worlds.

You see, Mrs. Campbell was the first black person I ever knew because my public school did not integrate until my 3rd grade year. I grew up in rural Mississippi and most times now when I mention that fact, the first thing many people comment about is the racial divide and hatred that has been Mississippi’s reputation. But Mrs. Campbell didn’t care what color I was and for that I am grateful.

There have been numerous days in my life when I felt that no one cared and that I wasn’t worth caring about. I know you’ve had those days too, everyone does from time to time. But Mrs. Campbell’s cards have served as a yearly reminder that someone did care.

About 20 years into our yearly correspondence I asked, “Why me?” Her response, “Each year I choose one or two students from my class that I feel a special connection with and I make a point to keep in contact with them.”

Simple act with profound results. Thank you and I give praise for you and your heart full of love, Mrs. Campbell. Your kindness altered my life in positive ways.

Now dear reader, it’s your turn.
What/Who is praiseworthy in your life?
Leave a comment below.

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9 thoughts on “Teacher’s Simple Gesture

    1. Sarah, won’t it be wonderful when we live in a world where everyone feels free to share what is inside them! Thanks for your comment.

  1. I am tired and my back hurts after a long day at work. Nonetheless, I am grateful that I have a job that challenges me, that I have a a car to drive home in, a nice house to go home to, a nice chair to sit in when I get there and plenty of food to eat for dinner. This gratitude exercise reminds me that there is much to be grateful for. Thanks, Yvette.

    1. So true! We can get so caught up in what’s wrong that we totally miss all the wonderful that surrounds us. Glad you are enjoying focusing on praise.

  2. Yvette, Your story is inspirational! What a blessing to have such influential people in our lives to think of us as one they have a connection with, even when we were children. I give great PRAISE for the special moments in our lives when we feel such a spiritual connection with another. It certainly feels like a gift in that moment. Oftentimes we embrace that connection, later to remember it as only a memory. Thanks to God for those moments when we are blessed with another being of light to remind us of our priorities and to continue the path knowing we are not alone… There will always be another connection of light and remembrance.

  3. Yvette, what a beautiful story of praise you shared today. Thank you for sharing it. Today I praise two of my co workers. They do not work in my department but we shared a work space. I was welcomed me with such genuine kindness as I transitioned to a new career. These two women continue to assist me in my career growth and offer direction and support when needed. They are a valuable resource that I appreciate every day. Starting a new career in your mid forties was frightening, They made it feel like home. Feeling blessed.

  4. What a phenomenal story! What a special teacher and persons. No wonder she had such an impact on your life. It makes me remember taking my children to visit a nursing home weekly when they were young and how much it touched the patients we visited. I had a wonderful talk yesterday with an 88 year old lady at my hair salon and it makes me wonder if I should begin the practice again. I am grateful for my dear grandfather who was like a father to me and sowed continual love and support into my life. I don’t know if I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for his love. Thanks for sharing your story and reminding me of the power of love.
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