Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Take notes......


i have a speech to write...

for tomorrow evening...........

for a woman i worked with for almost 20 years........

and i discovered i should have taken notes over those 20 years..

When i sat down to write i sorta knew what i wanted to say - i wanted to be humorous and cheeky and make people laugh.... Retirement shouldn't be a time of sadness.. i kept thinking it isn't a funeral

BUT everything i wrote for this speech sounded like a funeral speech........ AND it wasn't funny.......

i have discovered i can't just BE funny...........

AND i discovered something else about this wonderful woman who ran the school with one hand tied behind her back and made it all look damn easy............
She was a pretty private person............ she listened a lot.......but she didn't talk that much......... (she must have listened to her mother's advice - listen more than you talk)

This woman loved the children......... it didn't matter how busy her day was.. she always had time to stop and listen to a child read.. or a child tell her some convoluted story.... she always tasted their cooking experiments and never once wrinkled up her nose... she listened when they came to sing for her and she was always impressed with the job they did......... she would look for dry clothes for those kiddies who had an "accident" and always managed to find just the right thing for the child to wear...... Her greatest enjoyment was going on a field trip with a class.. or pulling on her runners and doing the Terry Fox run year after year right along side all the kiddies.........

She and i had talked about retirement....... about how we both wanted to just be there one day and gone the next....... no fuss.. no party.. no being the center of attention........

And i wonder what changed for her.. and will it change for me when my day comes??

And i wonder if it changes for me.... will someone be sitting the day before the party trying to write a speech and just not know what to say in a few words that will really tell the story of my joys and tribulations...... will they be able to honestly say i made an impact .. or that i will be missed..........

i have a speech to write...... and i should have taken notes........

5 comments:

M:e said...

In telling us what she was like, I think you have your speech right there. Describing someone you admire to someone who's never met them is a very powerful thing. She may be a very private woman and yet, through your words, I felt as if I knew the essence of her.

love and hugs xxx

selkie said...

I agree with M:e - I see the speech right there, in the things that define what this woman meant to the children, what she meant as a coworker.

Oddly, I am doing the EXACT same thing as I am sitting here. My coworker and friend sharon retires the end of the month and I was asked to write the speech too - and wanted the same things you want ...

Hisflower said...

i agree- your speech is right here in your entry today... her actions spoke louder and clearer than any of her own words of her life ever could.. she sounds like a wonderful woman..
hugs,
Hisflower

SPANKEDHORTIC said...

I vote for what M:e said too. If you want to add humour, think up the best one liners from your favourite TV comedies and convert them for purpose (not my advice, John Cleese said that he did this for speech writing, as far as I can remember he said "steal, steal and steal again")

Prefectdt

swan said...

I like this quote -- It sounds like what your friend has done:

To believe in something yet to be proved and to underwrite it with our lives; it is the only way we can leave the future open.--Lillian Smith

All the best,
swan