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Family and Friends is my everyday journal. Captain's Log is where I pontificate on religion and politics.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Remembering Robyn

Three years ago a wonderful lady moved into the classroom next to mine. The first thing you noticed about her was how tall she was, over six feet. She had a warm voice and friendly style that was refreshing after the other tenets of that room. While cleaning out furnature she wouldn't use I was able to get computer tables for my newly aquired mini-lab. I gave her for some reason my favorite teacher's chair. It was a discarded administration chair from my previous high school and was a hideous green, but it was comfortable. Something told me she needed a good chair. As we talked I found out she only came lately to teaching, that in fact she had worked construction most of her life as an electrician. I mentioned knowing an electrician and came to discover she had worked with him at Intel when it was being built.
Later that year she was diagnosed with lung cancer. She had already survived ovarian and bone cancer, and the doctors gave her only six months at most. I watched and prayed and helped her through chemo therapy, as did our entire department. We covered her classes, and found it amazing how well behaved they were, even the students were respectful of her condition.
She made it through that year and came back the next. She was out for nearly a month while at MD Anderson for treatment, but they sent her back. Her voice was much weaker and she was getting very frail. In the spring we had a party at her house to say goodbye as most of us didn't think she would make it through the summer.
When school started there she was. I moved out into my portable and she moved across the campus into M hall. I missed seeing her and talking to her. By the end of September she became so weak that teaching was no longer possible. The cheerleaders raised money for a microphone system to help her, which was a nice gesture. The last time I saw her was in the teacher's lounge. I gave her a hug and told her how much I missed seeing her every day. It was her last day at school. We had another party in her honor, but I came down with a cold, not wanting to add to her weakened immune system I stayed home, and talked to the dept. chair by phone expressing my regrets.
Word came to school today that she has gone on to another plane of existence. She had no family and there will be no services. What she wished for was for all of us to get together for an old fashioned Irish Wake, get rip roaring drunk and toast to her memory.
I'll be there. I've never been drunk in my life, and am not about to start now. I guess that will make me the designated driver for alot of fellow teachers.

5 comments:

Irina Tsukerman said...

I'm sorry. It sounds like she was a wonderful person and you really came together as a community to help her. And that last wish of her really does say a lot about her.

Breazy said...

Hello. I linked you through Brian's weekend round-up. I want to send my thoughts and prayers out to you and all of the people she touched .

P.M. Prescott said...

Thanks so much for your concerns.

grandma1 said...

Finished your book, M has read your book, hubby is still reaing on it. Bruce said today that he had read 5 or 6 chapters. M took one to school to show off, teachers wanted her to give it to them.

I enjoyed the book, a liitle more difficult to read than the fluff I am use to reading. I of course recognize it from the first drafts that Jean, hubby and read so long ago. It seems to fullfil the preacher in you. M picked up on the couple of typos. The history was easy to understand in novel form, sometimes alittle too much for the flow of the story. Research and facts were enlighting I did get a good feel of daily life in Rome at least for the elite. I am not sure that it wold save anyone, it might make them curious enough to read the Bible.

Terrific first book just keep going. I am proud of you, not just for the book but for all you have done with your life.

Love

Mom

1 plus twins said...

so sorry for the loss!! my thoughts and prayers are with you and all those loved her.