For many years, at least 7 or 8, my mother and I have been trying to track down a teacher that I had in primary school who I found so inspiring.
She is the main reason I decided to become a teacher, to hopefully have an impact on a young mind like she had on me. After my time in her class I knew I could do anything, ask any question, believe in myself. I still had a lot of growing up to do and a huge amount of confidence to develop. But she took the time to help me believe these things. Maybe it was because she was young, maybe it was her openness about herself with us that gained the trust. I cannot remember one specific thing. But I know that it is the year that I enjoyed most and tried my hardest. I was such a shy, quiet person, and she made me feel valued and important.
I cannot count the number of times I have searched her name, looked through staff lists and emailed schools hoping to find her. Mum had been doing the same.
A couple of months ago, during my regular morning chat with the folks on my way to work, mum told me she had some good news. One of her friends used to work at my primary school, and she had caught up with old colleagues. In conversation, this search of mine came up and one of the previous teachers said that she is in contact with her!
She sent through her new details which I took up eagerly, searched, and messaged, telling her all these things. I am not expecting a response, I just wanted to let her know the lasting impact and influence she had on a quiet little 10 year old girl.
If any of you ever have the opportunity to thank that person who had an impact on you, do it. We are all so quick sometimes to take things for granted, to just keep going on in life without openly reflecting on how we got to where we are, or who has impacted our decisions. We also don’t always think about the impact that we are having on others each day. Try to have one that makes a positive difference, pay it forward. I know that I want to have the same sort of impact on someone, and I know that I may never know if I have, but I may as well do my best every single day to make sure that my motivation and passion for what I do never dies.