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Three Boys & an Old Lady

This blogging mama loves finding new things and spreading the word about fab finds

A few years ago, I signed up as a Family Literacy Tutor at a local library.  After receiving a few weeks of training, I was matched up with a family:  a single mother and her three young children.  Natalie [name changed as a coutesy] dropped out of school shortly after becoming pregnant at 15.  She lived in the area all her life and always planned to return to school to earn her high school diploma, but never found the time.  Me, I had graduated from high school, had a couple years of college under my belt and was new to the area.  I was simply looking to do a good deed.  

Natalie’s boyfriend resented her decision to pursue a G.E.D.  He too was a high school dropout and he would often slam doors whenever we held tutoring sessions at her house.  It got to the point his behavior was so disruptive Natalie asked him to leave reminding him she was the one whose name was on the lease not his.  She and I would gather the children and read a book to them once a week.  Whenever she got to a word she couldn’t pronounce, I would help her sound it out utilizing the skills I had learned in my literacy tutor training.  We would write the word down and review its etymology after reading to the children.  

 After a couple of months of spending a couple nights a week with Natalie and her family, a friendship developed.  We admired each other.  She admired my quick learning skills and often commented on how smart I was.  I admired her ability to raise a family in such a non-conventional manner.  Although she often bragged to others about all she learned from me, I don’t think she ever knew that I too was learning.  

I learned a lot from Natalie.  I don’t think I ever thanked her for guiding me through my first Thanksgiving dinner as a newlywed or teaching me how to make virgin daiquiris that would fool even the drunkest drunk.  So, Beve…oops I mean Natalie THANK YOU for everything you taught me.  I greatly appreciate it.

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