Average

Ok

Test 1 45%

Test 2 50%

Test 3 65%

Test 4 70%

Test 5 80%

Test 6 85%

Test 7 80%

And my average 67.8%

 

I was just getting the hang of it.

It finally clicked for me.  But now it doesn’t count.  I mean it does but not really.  Not enough to prove that I know what I’m doing.  Not enough to show that I’m improving.  But almost enough to prove that I’m not stupid and that I may in fact know what I’m talking about…know what I’m doing.

 

Average

 

The middle child, the one who isn’t celebrated, the one who barely makes it.  The one who just inches by until…you know they do something extraordinary or until they manage to finally land a spot at the “above average” table.

 

***Let me for warn you…I don’t know where this blog is going? But I know this blog will speak to the hundreds and thousands that weren’t straight A students, who weren’t valedictorian, who didn’t graduate magna cum something and just graduated thank you Jesus cum laude… this blog is for them… for us.

 

So here it goes.

 

To the teachers of average students,

Let me give you a public service announcement really quick, the “average student” is where it’s at!  See the “above average” doesn’t need me.  They have their parents, extended family, auxiliary groups, and those teachers who jump on the popular “above average” student bandwagon. They are going to grow regardless of your teachings.  They are a sure thing.

But “the average,” they need you.  They thrive on your every word, remember everything you say and work harder just so they won’t disappoint you.    “The Average” are the ones that make you laugh when you don’t want to admit it.  They are the ones, at the end of a day that has been hard and tough, a day when you are ready to give up and quit…they say to you. ”See you to tomorrow.” And you figure well hell I guess I better show up.  So, get up, get dressed and show out for them because you are making a difference even when test scores and/or data says otherwise.  You are making a difference, trust me.

 

To the parents of average students,

Moms, Dads, Grandmas, and Pa-Pa’s I know being the guardian of an Average can be hard because your bragging rights are often times delayed.  At dinner parties, church, the local piggly wiggley when someone ask you, how is Tina or Tony doing? You get this heavy weight on your heart… a sense of hesitation. Especially after they have run off their child’s resume in 3 minutes or less that leaves you feeling like your child is doing better than me and I’m an adult.

It’s ok…but for now on don’t hesitate.  Just say, “Tina/Tony is doing great and you and her/he are having an awesome time exploring the endless possibilities that the Lord has in store for them.”

If it’s one thing I know about, The Average, they remember who was there encouraging them and pushing them through when they themselves didn’t think they were going to make it.  Don’t give up on them…trust me it will pay off in the end.

 

And now to “The Average”,

First off, I want to apologize to you on behalf of schools, test scores and GPA’s for often times making you feel as though you don’t matter.  I apologize for every time you thought your best was good enough or for come in 50th or just plain old last.

 

But I do have 2 things to share with you…2 very important things!  Two things that will change your life forever.  Come as close as you can to this screen.  And read this next sentence as loud as you can.

 

“God sends ordinary people to do extraordinary things.”

 

That’s right.

 

Let me name a few.

 

  • Michael Jackson
  • Prince
  • Oprah Winfrey- was fired from her first job and considered average looking.
  • Dre- below C average student
  • Former vice-president Joe Biden
  • Jesus

 

Shocking huh!

See, and there are many, many more.  And guess what else, The Average have strong work ethic.  My former principal, Dr. Rod Atkins, would always say “There are some that are smarter than me but they can’t out work me”.  Want me to tell you why that is?  It’s because we are used to the struggle, the hard work, the intendancy and the focus to get it done.

 

And secondly, and this is just in case someone hasn’t told you.

 

“You are enough.” And “Thank you.”

 

Dear Readers,

Please click on this link https://flipgrid.com/ec8182 to help encourage, an “Average” student who may be thinking about giving up and struggling. It is my hope to share this with my students throughout the school year for encouragement.

If you would like to read more about the average student statistic click on the link below.

https://www.inc.com/ilya-pozin/why-many-students-with-bad-grades-end-up-successful.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rehab

Ok first thing is first, close your mouth… Close it right now.

I know you didn’t know, I know you never would have guessed, thought, imagined, why? how? For how long?

I know you were just with me the other night, and you didn’t know?

You weren’t supposed to… I clean up very well…

 

I’ve had this addiction… this problem…for a little over 17 years…

I started with the small stuff.

Usually it would happen right after my first coffee of the day.

I should probably stop right now, I should probably end it before my confession costs me in ways that I might later regret.  But they say the first step is the most important, the most powerful, the step that will continue to set you free on your journey to rehab.

 

Let me warn you right now, before you read any further, before you travel down this blog any further, know that we are in this together, because I know there are hundreds of thousands suffering just like me.

And I am not alone.

 

Like I said, I started with the small stuff. In my earlier years, it happens almost daily, then it went to 3 to 4 times a day.

I remember when it first hit me, when I saw it, it was almost like I couldn’t breathe, like I was scared to accepted into my mind, into my head. But I couldn’t resist it anymore, I knew then I was addicted.

 

Addicted to the lightbulb going off in my student’s head.

 

Wait a minute, you didn’t think I was truly talking about drugs, were you? Me… do drugs…Me on the Mary jane…sugarbogger… smack…crack…meth…are you serious?  Are you kidding me, my mother and aunts read my blog.  Speaking of which she is probably calling me in 5…4…3 …2 “Dorian Leigh, you are not funny and take it down!” my mother will say.  You got caught by the title? You let me fool you with a metaphor.  You guys have been watching too much of Power and Housewives of whatever.

 

No, my addiction has been for many years watching the lightbulbs go off for my students.  It’s a high like no other.  To watch them and be right in the midst of it with them.  You know, the moment that I’m talking about, when their hand is on their forehead and they are slouched over the desk and steering at you, looking perplex. And then it happens, the straighten up in their desk, and they say “Now, I’ve got it!”  I absolutely love it.  As a matter of fact, I get the ultimate “high” from it.

I call my students the small drugs because they are small people.  But now I’m on to the big stuff…A bigger drug and a much bigger habit, a new fix.  Teaching teachers how to integrate technology into the curriculum.  This past school year, my principal allowed me to present a 4-series workshop with the 3rd -6th grade teachers on integrating technology into curriculum.  This was my big break, and I was going to be ready and show them every trick in the book.

The first day, to me was a complete disaster, my technology failed on a couple of occasions, internet went in and out, anything that could go wrong went wrong.  And I had one teacher who kept saying how much she hated technology.

Afterwards, I felt a little bruised, almost like you do when you fall on the ground.  I think it was my ego that was bruised more than anything else.  Later in the week, I ran into one of the 4th grade teachers who participated in the workshop and told me he had been using @nearpod and he loved it.

Second workshop, still not what I wanted it to be but a little better.  My 4th grade teachers were getting into but everyone else was ok with it… going through the motions.

But the 3rd workshop, was different. It was the workshop where I opened up with “I’m not going to keep you long.” We started with prodigygames.com, quizlet, kahoot.it and ended with coding.  That was it!!!! Right there.  My teacher, Mrs. Ireallyhatetechnology, said “I like this, and I want to finish it.”  I saw it right there. That lightbulb shined so bright at the top of her head.  She stayed over the workshop time.  Her and her co-partner, Ms. Imgonnamakeitwork.

Both of them became my new high.  My new drug of choice.

I’m not going to lie.  The 4th workshop, keep me up the night before with excitement.  I was hooked and so were they.  I loved it.  By this point everyone was engaged and actually using what I showed them in the workshops with their students.  Ms. Ireallyhatetechnology actually wanted to give her a private lesson and some extended learning opportunities.

And like any good presenter, you want to top yourself.  You want this last workshop, to be the one to be the mothers of all mothers right.  And I knew exactly what to do…I brought in some people who had been dealers for a long time… I got my students involved.  My class created the agenda for the last workshop and let me just say…watching them, listening to them devise a plan to teach teachers, to show them every piece of technology to teach those who have taught them.  It was a high like no other.  I mean this was some lethal stuff.

I started the 4th workshop letting the teachers know that the students designed this workshop with them in mind.  They learned and mastered everything on the agenda, @remind, @classdojo @plickers @quizlet @edmodo…playing with the apps having fun.  What was supposed to end at 6 p.m. ended at 7 p.m.  The time just got away from us.  As I was packing my stuff for the weekend, one of the teachers suggested we do some of these types of workshop over the summer.  “This shouldn’t end,” she said in a stern voice.

It’s summer time.  I still think about those workshops moments like it was yesterday.  Being reflective of the what went on and how to make the lightbulb go off even in times of struggle and when you want to give up.  You know it’s like being in rehab.  And it’s true what they say… the “cravings and yearnings” to teach…never go away.

New Edition/New Addition

You’ve seen it right?

I know you have.

Remember?… I know you do?

You were right there… Standing up in the middle of the living room, practicing the precision of steps with each of the songs?

Screaming at the TV and yelling…” That was my JAMMMM.”

I know you were watching, so just fess up…

You were watching Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Mike, Ralph and Johnny do their thing on your screen.

You spent 3 evenings in a row watching the New Edition Movie.

Now before you start… with the “Everyone didn’t watch it, Dr. D.”  Before you start with the…”Black girls were only ones into New Edition.”

I want you to come closer.  Lean in.  Ah huh right there.

Over 1 million people watched the New Edition Movie, Black women, white women, Puerto Rican women, Mexican Women…most women and I’m sure a couple of guys as well.  To be honest there were more people watching The New Edition Movie than there were people at President Trump’s inauguration. And that isn’t and alternative fact.

Now let that fact simmer your grits.

But why so many?

Why New Edition? What’s their story?

It’s a very simple story and in case you haven’t seen it,  I won’t give it all away but I’ll say this about all of that.  The New Edition story is one of triumph, against the odds, conflict and resolution, reinvention, creativity and believing in oneself again.

While I was watching the movie, it really got me to thinking.  What would I do if I wasn’t afraid to do it?  What would I do if I wasn’t concerned about what others said or thought?

The New Edition Movie took me back.  Back in time when I didn’t have a lot of fears.  Back to a time when I would dream and goal set without pause.

After Part 3 of the New Edition Movie, I was motivated! Motivated to go back to the younger me…the me that didn’t take myself to seriously but knew I could do whatever I set my mind to.

It was then when I wanted to have a New Addition for myself.  A New Addition to my life and do something that I wanted to do.

I remember when I first thought about it and said it out loud, I was shun and discouraged at the time.  “You already have a doctorate why would you want to go back to school?”  But I’m going to, I’m going back to get a 2nd masters in curriculum & instruction in technology.  Because I want to…Because I want to be skilled and trained in that area and I want to me marketable outside of my district.

Another New Addition will be for me to blog weekly and to podcast my blog.  Not for any particular reason other than I want too and think I might enjoy it.

Additionally, taking more time for my son and I to hangout, David will be a senior next year and he will be going off to college soon.  I know I’m going to miss him and the thought of him growing up brings tears to my eyes.  He is, by far, has been my GREATEST ADDITION EVER.

So after watching the movie for 3 evenings, I’ve learned that I CAN STAND THE RAIN and I’ve learned when to COOL IT NOW. But most importantly, I’ve learn how to add additions to my life that will make me happy.

I Fell/I Failed!

     It’s been 3 weeks since I fell at Panera Bread.  And I mean FELL DOWN!

     I was sick that Sunday, so right after church I decided to get some broccoli cheddar cheese soup from Panera Bread, you know, to help with the cold.

     I parked my car and I noticed that the sidewalk was a little icy. In my mind, I was smarter than a misstep. I had planned to avoid the slippage, to get myself firmly on the sidewalk walking to Panera Bread. I reached for the wall for balance and WHAM!

    I FELL. And not the cute fall that you could you pass off for jogging; not the runway model fall (you know, the kind of fall that when you fall people are interested in what you are wearing) but the busted-flat-on-your-ass-for-the-world-to-see fall.

  BAM!

  There I was, looking up at the sky.  Searching… Searching… Searching.  

  What was I searching for you might ask? I was searching for the pain.  Another lady helped me up and asked if I was okay.   I got up, walked into the store feeling a little bit embarrassed — ok, a lot of embarassed.

A guy came over to me: “Hey! I just saw you fall. Are you okay?”

I said, “I think so, I think I’m OK.”

He asked me if I was going to let them know that I fell due to the ice.

I said, “Yes”.

Later that evening, I was still searching and searching and waiting and waiting.  I waited for that pain to hit, the bruise to come, the bone to break. But it didn’t.  When I woke up the next morning, I anticipated again some type of pain or agony from the fall, but yet there was almost nothing.  There was something like a small ache, but after going to work and moving around with my students, it was not existing either. I was fine, no scars or anything. I was… fine.

    Thinking back to that moment and being reflective, I found myself remembering everything about the incident except, the most important part… The RAISE.

     I am a firm believer in the quote: “You have to do something that you’ve never done before to get something that you never had.” 

     In my first career, everything I wanted, I got.  I worked hard and followed the course and I was rewarded for it.  I loved it.  So, when I decided to change career paths… I just knew it should and would be easy because I would follow the course.  I did what I was supposed to do and I should be where I wanted to be…but I wasn’t.

     See, when I was young I didn’t focus on the fall.  I focused on the RAISE.  When I fell, I would dust myself off and say, “I’m okay!” Because I knew that I wouldn’t have to fall too many times before I would be back on my feet and rising to the top of the next task.  So I did just that–I focused on the “raise”.  See, back then I didn’t have a lot to lose.  You remember how it was when you were younger, you would fall and if you scraped your knee, you put a band-aid on it and kept going?  Trying to reach the “raise”?

     But when you get older things change, there is more at RISK in the falls.  More collateral damage, more broken bones, more eyes on you like family, children, spouse, etc.   

     And that’s when it starts.

    You stop dreaming or goal-setting because you have a hard time bouncing back from the broken bones, the stitches, or those feelings like you’ve failed.  

     So there I was in the RUT!

    There have been a couple of things that have happen to me in 2016.  Some good and some bad, but in 2017, I’m trying something different.  

    In 2017, I’m focusing on the RAISE instead of the FALL.

    This year, I’m focusing on my purpose and all that it may entails.

    I’m focusing on the RAISE more because I have been there and done that with the FALL.

    I am quite sure that I will fall again and I will probably even break something, but I will focus on the healing process and not dwell on the pain and be captivated by the hurt.

    This year I will show the watchers and the viewers how I RAISED from the FALL.

    This year when I FALL I will say “I’m okay” and RAISE myself up to new levels of the best me I can be.

      

Watch Your Mouth!

There are a couple of things that you won’t catch me doing.

You won’t catch me eating fried chicken out in public.

You won’t catch me eating watermelon out in public.

You won’t catch me teaching students that the button on the iPad is called the “belly button.”

You won’t catch me cussing in front of my mother or drinking in front of my mother.

…And most importantly, you won’t catch me using the “N-” word in my professional learning network… in a Voxer group.

That’s right, I said it… I wouldn’t use the “N-” word. Point blank period!

Earlier this week, I heard a colleague from another state who was concerned about students of color using the “N-” word.  He, within moments of expressing concern, used the WHOLE “N-” word and let me tell you, I clutched my pearls as I was driving to pick up my son from his job.  Someone had forwarded me the message and wanted to get my opinion… my take… my reaction.

So before jumping to conclusions, I listened. I listened to the entire vox in context.  The colleague expressed how disturbed he was when he heard students of color around use the “N-” word towards one another and at one point, he himself had been called the “N-” word.  This colleague also said that he worked with another African American co-worker who also hated the use of the word and discouraged students from saying it as well.

I was nodding my head to EVERYTHING he was saying as I was driving down the twining, twisty roads to pick up my son.  I was thinking to myself, “This is my friend’s (the person who told me about the discussion) way of making a mountain out of a mole hill.”  I thought to myself, “There goes Tamar Braxton, starting stuff again.” (Tamar Braxton is what I sometimes call my controversial friend because he has fallen out with almost everyone in my PLN at some time or another.)

But then it happened…

Out of nowhere… HE did it… HE said it.

He said the whole “N-” word with “–er” (and let me say this, it doesn’t matter if he said it with an “-a” at the end or “-er” — he said it!)

See, this group is at a place, a comfort and respect level, where everyone has a say and you don’t have to be seen.  I have been with this group for over a year. I have sung with this group, I have learned with this group and most importantly, I have GROWN with this group.

So when I heard the “N-” word… it hit me like a 10 car pile up on I-75 (a major highway in Michigan).  It hit me HARD, like one may hit a deer and leave it at the side of the road lifeless.

I pulled over to the side of the road.

I grabbed the steering wheel and felt something on my hand…I lifted my hand and I turned on my interior lights to see what was there…it was a wet substance.

It was a tear.

What the hell?!…where did that come from?  I grabbed the rear view mirror and looked at my eyes.  They were red and filled with anger.  I was visibly upset and I had, in fact, gotten misty-eyed… aka shed a tear… aka cried.

I started wondering.

Wasn’t I enough?

Wasn’t I respected enough?

Enough not to use the “N-” word in a place where I thought I was respected?

Aren’t my years as a sports journalist enough to respect by not using that word?

What about my Master of Science in Education?

Or my Education Specialist Degree?

I know! What about my Doctoral Degree in Educational Leadership?  

My 17 years of teaching and administration in education?

When is enough truly enough?

I guess my question is: “Would you drop the “N-” word in my face?”  

If you wouldn’t, you shouldn’t have dropped it in a professional setting.

I do not like that the “N-” word, Sam I am.

I do not like it with Green Eggs and Ham.

I do not like the “N-” word in a box, on the moon because it kicks rocks.

I do not like it, Sam I am.

So let me me answer the burning question you had about your student of color using the “N-” word toward one another or toward you.

Simply say, “DON’T SAY THAT!”

“DON’T SAY THAT, because you don’t know the history of the word.”

“DON’T SAY THAT, because you surely wouldn’t like it if I used it on you.”

Or “Young men, let me show you a movie called 13th, and what the word really means.”

With that being said, my dearest colleague, I want you to know when you enter the PLN, you are around People of Color, Caucasians, Latinos, Jews, Muslims, Christians, Agnostics, Atheists, etc.  who are MORE than enough for you to respect and NOT to use the “N-” word in their presence.

If you like my blog check out this one:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pO1qPm_2S11Q4uOhchsKcIuVhTX6KdsggDGk4zjADYU/edit

 

 

Secret Weapon

I’ve had a secret weapon for a long time.

I didn’t always know I had it.

Nor did I know how to use.

To be honest… sometimes I didn’t like it, and more importantly, a lot of times I felt like IT didn’t like ME.

It took me many years to figure out just how to use it, value it, in fact,  treasure it and often times listen to it.

This summer has been a very challenging summer for me on a personal level.  And I’ve needed to call on this secret weapon of mine now perhaps more than ever before.

So what do I do? I go into the closet of my heart, pull out the holster of my mind, and I start to focus on my aim.  My secret weapon is not a gun… but something much more piercing… my secret weapon is my mother, Wanda Chestnut.

For those of you that know me personally, you know that I have one nickname for my mother — Commander Wanda L.  That’s right… She is the epitome of the Jedi Mind trick.  Let me give you just a quick example, or at least let me try to make this quick:

Remember wonderful Lillian Vernon? (I do believe they still exist.) Well, at an early age, my mother impressed upon me the value of my name. That is to say, YOUR name is YOUR brand.  So I didn’t walk around worrying about sporting the Jordans or Versace, I was to wear my own name…Dorian… and wear it proudly!  My mother would also buy me things monogrammed from Lillian Vernon.  Well, one small purchase of a monogrammed laundry bag came in the mail via UPS for me when I was in Kindergarten.  The laundry bag was monogrammed “Dorian L. Roberts.” I remember being excited and wanting to take it out of its new shiny plastic wrappings but my mother said, “No, we are putting this away for later, you aren’t using this right now.”

I was a little disappointed and asked why I couldn’t play with it right then.  Her response was, “This is your laundry bag for you to use when you go off to college,” she answered.  Believe it or not, that bag did indeed stay inside of the plastic bag in the closet in the middle of my shelf just above the rod in my bedroom on the eastside of Detroit until the very day I set off for university study!  One hot August day in 1992, I opened up an empty pink suitcase and took it from that shelf in my closet and placed that specially monogrammed laundry bag in the suitcase.  And off I went to Norfolk State University.  There were a lot times during high school when I didn’t think I was going to graduate, let alone go on to college, but I did.  My mom, however, always knew, always believed and never for a second had a doubt that I would one day need a monogrammed laundry bag for college! She set the expectations high… making it not an option to obtain anything less than a college degree.

My mother worked in proposal management at General Dynamics for 32 years, I think.  She had an outstanding work ethic.  She worked so hard she would often go to bed early and wake up at 8  p.m. and think it was 8 a.m., mistakingly thinking she was late for work leading her sometimes into a panic.  She was often times on travel for months at a time and I had to stay with my grandparents during her travels.  I remember I missed her so much, that one day (I was about 6 years old), I looked into her phonebook (Sidenote: I grew up in a day and time where you kept numbers & addresses in phonebooks and even mailed out Christmas Cards… of the snail mail variety.) and I called her boss.  I told the boss to send my mom back home because it was a snowday and I wanted her to play with me. (No fear, no shame!)

Yep, that was me! Me and my big mouth…What were the end results of that little phone call, you may ask? She came home within the week.

Now, my mother has never been one to overtly brag of me, her grandson, husband or anything else.  Her motto has always been, ”Show them better than you can tell them.” But she is very proud of her family.

 

There is one thing my mother has done that I wanted to do just like she did.  I wanted to become a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated just like she did.  Just to give you a little history, my mother is an AKA.  I knew nothing else about anything else but AKA.  I remember her singing the Greek alphabet in the kitchen while she was in there.  (That’s right, I said it… while she was in the kitchen! My mom doesn’t cook, so you read it right — while she was in the kitchen! Just IN there… LOL!)  I have pink & green barrettes, dresses, and a nice pink bedroom that would put many Pinterest posts to shame. (Did I mention I’m no longer 5 years old?)  Since my mother knew she had a daughter who couldn’t walk and chew gum at the same time, she encouraged me to think about the sorority possiblity after I graduated.  And I did just that, but kept it a secret.

 

And I’m very proud to announce that on Sunday, May 29th, 2016 my mother and I became sorors. She had no idea I was even in the process and was shocked beyond belief. (My mother thought she was coming to see me in a fashion show.)  

 

And so… this summer, I did something that I haven’t done before.  I spent the summer just being a daughter and hanging out with my mom.  We have texted back and forth on a weeknight, and I’ve read her corny jokes; turned her on to different TV shows, talked about my personal business and my plans; and mostly we just spent the days listening and being there for each other. I got the chance and the blessing to be there for her as she has been and is continuing to be there for me.

 

So I really want you, the reader, to understand something — I’ve been off the grid so to speak this summer.  Some might even say I haven’t been CONNECTED.
But I have been… with my secret weapon…my mother!

Lose to Win Again!

If you would like to listen to the podcast of this blog click on this link: http://bit.ly/1qCkH6R

Lose to Win Again!

Every time I hear her sing it, I’m moved to tears.

“Have you ever needed someone so bad…” she sings.

I shake my head, thinking “I sure did… I sure have…”

 

Every time I hear Fantasia’s song “Lose to Win Again”, it resonates in my spirit—not my heart or my mind—but my SPIRIT.

I’ve had major losses…

I’ve lost a job…

I’ve lost money…

I’ve lost a man…

I’ve lost my father…

Hell, I’ve lost my mind…

 

This song resonates with me so much—because I realize the losses that aren’t really losses. Many are well-developed and unexpected wins.

 

One of the biggest losses I ever had or I should I say a loss I felt at the time was the biggest I could imagine, was the loss of Mr. Truth.

Mr. Truth—that’s right. You guys know I nickname everyone. So I’ll call him Mr. Truth.

Mr. Truth is my ex.

Mr. Truth told me the truth from the moment that I met him.

Mr. Truth was funny, a “take-charge” kind of man, his way or no way.

I met Mr. Truth in New York while hanging out at a summer cook-out.

Mr. Truth flirted with me the whole time and treated me like a glamorous Dorian.

 

*** Note: He absolutely should have because, have you seen me? I am a Goddess. Well, at least I was back then.

 

Mr. Truth and I spent a lot of time together. He would take my girlfriend Christina and me out to Dave and Buster’s almost weekly.  We had a ball.  Mr. Truth and I had a very honest relationship.  We would talk into the wee hours of the night about each other’s dreams, hopes, goals and desires.

 

Oh snap! No we didn’t! Damn it! That was just Dorian doing all the talking and Mr. Truth doing all the listening. He listened to every word and was even encouraging, probably so he could use the words against me later—which he did.

 

Mr. Truth was always very honest.  He told me that he was still in love with his ex-girlfriend but he wouldn’t go back to her because he believed in us as a couple. (But it was really because she had enough sense not to take him back!)

 

He was very honest. Honest to the point of being hurtful.

 

And then came the test.

 

Now, I want you to understand something.  I have failed every single test that I have taken.  I am not a good test taker at all.  The only test that I’ve passed without studying is my driver’s license test.

 

So when I went to pee on the “stick test”, I just knew there would be no 2 lines for me.

 

But guess what, I passed.

 

I passed with flying colors.

 

So I did what every woman in America does when they pass the “stick test”. I took it again, hoping to fail.  Hoping to be wrong.  I mean, I suffered from test anxiety right, so I was probably so anxious just taking the test, I made a mistake and passed it right?

 

Wrong!

 

When I told Mr. Truth I was pregnant, He did what he was known for–told the TRUTH.  “I’m not ready for a child, and I don’t want to take care of a baby,” he said.  “Just get rid of it.”

 

I refused.  After the initial shock wore off from my family, my father and mother said they would help support me in any way that they could.

 

After a big blow up with Mr. Truth, he said these very harsh words in his directive to me.

“I want you to get in your red truck, go the f— back to Michigan, and get the hell out of my life.  I will never do a thing to help you with that baby and if you keep it you will NEVER amount to ANYTHING!”

 

So there I went—back to Michigan, because I lost my job and my man.  I moved in with my parents and found a job teaching 1st grade.

 

I thought I lost so much and most importantly, I thought, “How can I raise this baby of mine?”  One night, I was staying at the school late because being 7 months pregnant people tend not to invite you to happy hour. The building engineer was very surprised to see me still in my classroom.

 

Mr. Meeks asked, “Ahh, Ms. Roberts, can I ask you something?”

 

“Sure,” I said.

 

“Where is that baby’s father?” he asked.

 

“Whelp, he has chosen not to be involved with my son,” I cringed.  “But I’m more scared about raising a little boy.”

 

Mr. Meeks smirked, “You just raise him to be the man that YOU would want to marry.”

 

I remember that moment.

Like it was yesterday.

I remember what I had on, how my hair was.  I remember everything.

I remember what Mr. Meeks said and how he said it.

So matter-of-factly, so simple but so deep… my 1st true “drop the mic” moment in a school building.

 

Fantasia, I so get your song, darling. I had to lose so I could win.

And I’m winning BABY.

See, I had to lose you to gain so much more.

 

And I have…

I’ve gained a wonderful son.  He is great, awesome.  A sophomore in high school. A future leader. He is fun, funny, smart and a go-getter.

I gained Mr. Big, oh yeah he’s tall, dark, handsome and very smart.  Why the nickname Mr. Big? …Well… I’ll keep you guessing… but because of his “Big Heart.”

 

See, I had to lose Mr. Truth so I could WIN with my son and Mr. Big.

 

And now is the big secret.

Meryl Streep once gave an interview and told a reporter, for every character she plays she gives them a secret.

 

Here is my secret to you Mr. Truth.

The whole time I was with you, I dimmed my light for you.

I dimmed my light to make you seem more intelligent, more handsome, more knowledgeable some might even say… sexier.

 

Thank you for the LOSS, however, I did WIN in THE END!