We have a family update this week. Recently our beloved ESL teacher, Miss Sue, became sick. "Her girls" as they are known both to us and to her, decided to send her a get well soon message. A message of healing from those whose lives are being healed.
Their decision was so very precious that we want to share their expression of love and hope to Miss Sue with you, as it is yet another sign of healing in progress. One year ago they would not have been able to express their emotions. One year ago their emotions were suppressed and stuck deep inside them. One year ago they were not able or ready to connect with someone else, to think about someone other than themselves. How much can change in a year. We live in constant amazement as we watch their initiatives.
The week after our Miss Sue took a break from teaching, her girls turned up all wearing white. We had no idea what was taking place. Her girls knew exactly what they were doing, everything was fine tuned. They would paint pictures and make a video clip to send her to encourage her as she recovers.
"We decided, all of us together, we decided to wear white clothes as a sign of respect and in honor of Miss Sue. White is a sacred color that shows purity, healing, peace. Her body needs a touch of peace and healing so that she can return to us."
"She has been so very patient in teaching us English. Miss Sue is never in a hurry, she will repeat things a thousand times until we understand. So now it is our turn to be patient for her, until she heals and is well again. Now we are here for her. She made our life better, now we will make hers better.
I love everything about you, Miss Sue. I love when you smile, your whole face becomes bright and light. It’s true that learning English is hard but when we see your smile, it becomes so easy for us." - Kristina
"We decided to wear white to show Miss Sue that a group of pure hearted kids love her and are with her. To tell her that we are praying for her. We are by her side and will never leave her. I love Miss Sue and I appreciate all her hard work in teaching us." - Shahla
"We have been blessed since the day that we met her, now it is our opportunity to bless her. I love you so much Miss Sue. I love you because you treat us and love us like your children. I pray for you to get well fast."
"We miss you and are waiting to see you very soon. I love everything about you Miss Sue. You are my teacher. You are perfect, there is nothing missing in you. I love your patient way with us. I just love you." - Haniya
"I miss you, I want to see you again and hear your sweet, kind voice. I love the way that you teach us, it is so full of love and patience." - Hadiya
Liza and Jadelin
"I miss you, I miss your smile. Even though I don't see you on the screen at the moment, you are still close to me, and I feel you near me. You always put a smile on my face so I love you for that." - Rahaf
"I love you Miss Sue, get well very very soon. I just love you. I love you more and more when I see you through the TV screen." - Ninas
"We miss you a whole lot and are looking forward to meeting with you again. I love you." - Ramzia
"You are the best teacher in the whole world. I can't wait to see your smile again. You love me and I love you." - Liza
Haniya and Jolya
"May God give you strength and healing, I can't wait to see you again. I send you a big hug and my love."
I find this to be utterly amazing. The broken are healing well and are pouring out their healing assurance on the sick. It reminds me of Kintsugi, the Japanese art of putting broken pieces together with gold, embracing the flaws and imperfections, not eradicating but embracing so as to make the vessel stronger.
I think back to August when this same group of girls stood around the fountain in the garden, holding up their crowns. Their scars are becoming crowns, worn with dignity and grace. Worn as an example to our Miss Sue, and to each one of us. That which was considered by many to be valueless, destroyed, broken is now being filled with pure gold. It is beautiful, oh so beautiful.
Miss Sue, we pray for a super speedy and full recovery for you, but are actually grateful for the opportunity that you have given us to express our love, to celebrate cracks and tears, and the scars of captivity, and for the gold in the cracks to be a shining example to the world.
Miss Sue, you have become REAL.
"Real isn't how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. "It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with you, but REALLY loves you, then you become real." "Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit. "Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for she was always truthful. “When you are REAL you don't mind being hurt. “ "Does it happen all at once, like being wound up, or bit by bit?” "It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse, “You become. It takes a long time, that’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out, and you may get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all because once you are Real, you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."
Margaret Williams Bianco: The Velveteen Rabbit.