Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Slice of Life Writing

One of my favorite parts of OWP classes is the time for pleasure writing.  It's such a good habit to get into, but always the first thing tossed to the side when life gets busy.  And yet, so important to practice as teachers of writing!

Here is a piece I wrote last week.  It still needs a little tweaking, but in the name of practicing what I preach, I thought I'd go ahead and share it.

One fateful day I was helping my students with independent reading projects.  Rachel B. came up and asked for help in cutting a box.  I grabbed an Exact-O knife to make the cut she wanted.  And promptly sliced into my left pointer finger. 
The pain was immediate.  And being in front of a classroom of students, I tried not to curse or cry or be too dramatic.  I walked over to the sink to wash it off and told one of the students to get our support ed.  When she came into the room, I told her to look at it for me, as I hadn’t yet been able to.  She took one look at my finger and wrapped it back up, telling me to go down to the nurse, she would watch my class. 
My students were so sweet as I left the room, telling me to be brave and that it would be okay.  C.C. even said, “Miss Sheets, I just got stitches and they didn’t hurt at all!  They’ll put this special goo on your finger to numb it and you’ll be good to go!”
            As soon as I got out into the hall, I dropped my brave façade and cried my way all down to the nurse’s office.  I remember walking into her room, probably paying no mind to the actual students who were in there, and telling her I needed attention.  She took one look at it and said, “Yep, you need to go get stitches.” 
At which point I cried even harder.  When she asked who she could call to drive me to the hospital, I let out an inconsolable, “I don’t have any family in the area!” 
“That’s okay.  I’ll get a principal to take you,” she reassured.
After a few minutes of my pity party and with my finger wrapped up tighter than Fort Knox, I had calmed down enough to drive the two miles down the road to an Urgent Care.
I filled out the paper work, including the forms on workers’ comp (They didn’t have a box to check labeled, “I’m just a klutz!”), all the while holding my left hand in the air to stop the bleeding (which in my mind was I’m sure gushing out of me at a much faster rate than in reality).


The nurse took me back to the doctor surprisingly quickly and both were so incredibly kind and calm.  The doctor told me, “I want to do a really nice job with these stitches because that will be your ring hand some day.” 
To which I again wailed, “I’m never getting married!”

The best part was I got to go home right away and even got Chipotle on my way home.  And the next two days brought two snow cancellations!
            Which was great until I started getting emails from worried parents with traumatized children!  My favorite said, “Rachel is really worried about you after you cut your finger off.  Are you okay?”
            My sweet Rachel, not only am I okay (and even getting married after all), but I will never forget you!

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