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An Ironic, Simple Little Story

August 8, 2010

Teachers, especially those in public schools, can teach from 1 to hundreds of students each year, so in my opinion, it would be alright if a teacher forgot my name. I recall seeing a teacher speaking with a former student of hers. It seemed to be a fascinating conversation. The student seemed to be catching the teacher up on her life events. The two finally ended the conversation with very enthusiastic goodbyes and as soon as the student was out of earshot, she admitted to not recognizing the student at all. I always have a small fear that a teacher won’t recognize me after a few years, but I also make myself understand that it’s not improbable that the teacher just can’t remember me. Where I work, I wear a name tag, and whenever I see someone whom which I recognize, I try to make my name tag as noticeable as possible.

Today, however, I came across an elementary school teacher of mine at work. She was talking with another employee about how she used to be my teacher and she gestured towards me, and I looked back. She smiled and I smiled back, but I wasn’t making a connection quite yet. She addressed me by my name and then asked me if I recognized her. Ironically, I paused, trying to collect my memories of this person. Luckily, I did connect her face with the right name. I just wished that the fact that I was caught off guard hadn’t hidden my enthusiasm. I absolutely loved this teacher (all of my multiplication facts songs come from her) and if my mind wasn’t worrying less about my teachers’ memories and more about mine, I would have been on my game.

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