A Rambling Man (Part Two) from Chapter Eight
They wandered in the wilderness in a solitary way; they found no city to dwell in. Psalm 107:4 KJV
At the end of the last school day, I darted out of the building like a kid who had discovered a new candy store. I was free. Suddenly, all of that pent-up emotion and weight was lifted from my body.
The months after my forced resignation were particularly tough for me. I couldn’t go anywhere in that small town without running into former parents or students. People would talk and gossip behind my back. They would laugh and ridicule me when they saw me in a grocery store or at a public event. I felt like a convict or a fugitive. I also felt betrayed.
I became depressed and lonely. I had lost most of my friends (if you could call them friends) due to the humiliating school situation. And I was homesick. I missed my parents, sister and friends back in Virginia. I also struggled to pay my bills.
I didn’t realize, though, that I had developed quite a following among my elementary Suzuki violin students. Unlike the unruly and disrespectful older students, these younger students and their parents held a high regard for me. They adored me and my teaching style. They inquired with the school board as to why their teacher wasn’t coming back next year. They didn’t get any straight answers.
Soon my phone couldn’t stop ringing with calls from parents who said they missed me. They wanted me to teach their children violin. The demand started to grow, so I decided to travel to students’ homes to teach violin after school hours. In this way, I developed a nice little part-time business teaching private violin lessons once a week.
Although my confidence and ego had been severely wounded, this demand for private violin lessons was sweet ending to an extremely difficult year. It was a silver lining to my dismally failed first teaching experience. It seemed at the time that I was looking into the future and saw a glimpse of a bright future ahead.
Despite this, my life changed for the worse. I desperately wanted escape from my life after being brutally rejected and humiliated as a first-year teacher. After 20-straight-years of non-stop training and education, I was ready for a break. I became a rambling man. Over the next three years, I changed from being a straight, play-by-the-rules type of guy to a wild man out of control.
I got the call one day when I least expected it. I had changed some of my phone services with Iowa Bell to save money, and soon received a call from a friendly woman who worked with the customer service office. She said her name was Sherry Gilmore, and she wanted to know if I was satisfied with the changes they had recently made to my phone service.
I told Ms. Gilmore that I was indeed pleased and thanked her for her time. I was ready to hang up when something peculiar happened. Ms. Gilmore wanted to keep talking. She asked me to call her Sherry. She said it was short for Sherrice. So, I continued to talk with her. The conversation quickly changed from business to personal, and we ended up sharing our personal lives, our dreams and aspirations for over an hour.
Our conversation finally ended with Sherry suggesting that the two of us meet for dinner. This struck me as very forward and bold, but apparently Sherry had connected with my carefree nature. She told me she was single again, lonely and in need of a friend. So the two of us made plans for a dinner date the next night.
#IndigoSeaPress; #ThorntonCline; #NotMyTimeToGo; #Angels; #Guardianangels; #MikeSimpson
(Read part three from “Not My Time To Go” in July)