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Group Hug

On Friday, I posted about the loss of our family’s sweet Mama Dot, the Mr.’s grandmother.

I wanted to share a precious story about that day.

I was teaching my 6th/7th period class (I have them for ninety minutes), when I received word that Mama Dot probably wasn’t going to make it through the day.

That news was very upsetting, and try as I might, I couldn’t hide my sadness.

I assured my students that I would be okay, and I kept teaching.

Less than thirty minutes later, I got the news that Mama Dot had passed away.

My kids were watching me carefully and knew immediately that the news was bad.

One of my students said, “Mrs. AuburnChick, you’re really having a rough year.”

What she was referring to was the day, only a month and a half before, when Chicky had called me to tell me about her knee.

It was this same class that had assured me that things would be okay.

On Friday, they were there for me again.

As I attempted to resume class, half of my students surrounded me, and I heard one say, spontaneous, “Group hug!”

They put their arms around me, and one young man, an energetic guy who has a winsome personality, put his arms around all of us.

It was a quick hug but one filled with so much empathy and love.

This class is comprised of mostly girls, with only four boys on the roster.

They are all very sensitive, with their youthful hearts that feel pain deeply.

Their kindness lifted my spirits and went a long way toward healing the frustration felt by all of us at recent classroom behavior.

We truly are a community – one that shares joys and sorrows in the condition we call humanness.

I will always treasure that hug.

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