Arlene had tried therapy
|Theresa Franklin, Stories for Christ||
|Theresa Franklin, Stories for Christ||
Arlene had been bitter most of her life. She had been mistreated and abused as a child. She had been hurt as a young adult and was never able to recover. Blaming that one incident for all her difficulties, she was an angry, bitter woman. The bitterness had destroyed any close relationship she had attempted. She had many friends, but none that she could count on in a storm. She had had a few romances in her life, but none lasted for very long. After a while they got tired of being around someone who was always upset about something and impossible to please.
Arlene had tried therapy
Gladys was looking forward to the vacation. She was flying to New York to see her daughter and grandchildren. Her husband was unable to join her and she was furious with him; but he sent her to the airport with his love and gifts for the grandchildren. After going through security and locating the gate, she walked through the over-priced gift shops and managed to leave without purchasing anything. As she passed the windows, she noticed the darkening sky. Inclement weather had been predicted and the possibility of delayed flights had been announced over the airport intercom.
Gladys walked into one of the restaurants and seated herself at a table in the corner.
Kelsey was excited. She had waited a long time for this day. It was the first day of school. She had gathered her school supplies at least a month ago. She had visited her new classroom several times.
Once when she was going down the hallway toward the room, the principal told her to stop running. How
could she explain to him that she was just so excited to be here? Her mom had made her a special lunch last night and put it in the refrigerator. Kelsey and her mom had gone shopping to pick out the perfect outfit for this day. Kelsey wanted a red one. Red like the pictures of old schoolhouses.
Ann and her husband, Ralph were faithful in their home church. They both served on several committees and were a reliable resource for the pastor and congregation. In turn, Ralph and Ann enjoyed serving their Lord and congregation.
Ann was mopping the kitchen floor when the telephone rang. She was not surprised to hear her pastor's voice on the other end.
"Good morning, Ann." Pastor Peachy said,
"Good morning, Pastor. What can I do for you today?"
"Mr. Paulson passed away last night. He had been ill for several months. I need you to take some food over to the family. The address is 675 N. Point St."
"Alright, I'll call some of the ladies in the church to bring food. They will bring it to the church and I'll pick it up and deliver it to the house."
"That's great. I'll leave the door to the kitchen open and they can put the food in there. Thanks for helping, Ann. I really appreciate you."
"I enjoy it, Pastor. I'll be at the church in a couple
“When we were at the doctor’s office the other day, I read two chapters of the Bible to Brittany. I am determined to read that book, no matter how long it takes. Do you have any other books I can read? I didn’t want to read when I was in school. Now I’m really trying to get into reading. I know that some of my problem in school was because I just didn’t want to do it. But now I have Brittany and Emily to care for. I’ve got to have a good job to support them, so I need to learn to read. Do you have any books that would help me?”
“Miss Carolyn’s heart went out to this boy/man who was trying so hard to be the caretaker he needed to be for the girl and baby he loved. “I don’t have any books that I think would be interesting to you. Let’s look on the internet and find some things for you to read.”
“Thank you. I really appreciate your help.”
“You are welcome. Now let me send some links to your email so you can read at home.”
Brittany and Emily came back in the room. Immediately Charles noticed that Emily had a band-aid on her thumb. “What happened to her?”
“She got a paper cut playing with a book. She didn’t even cry. We just noticed the blood and saw the cut.” Brittany explained.
Charles took his baby’s hand in his own and brought it gently to his mouth. After several kisses on the boo-boo he let go of her hand. It was obvious to Miss Carolyn that everything Miss Jackie had said about this boy was true. He truly loved that baby.
On the drive home Miss Carolyn couldn’t get Charles out of her mind. He was not at all what she had expected. He was polite and personable. He was more responsible for his baby than most men twice his age. He was truly a good kid who had gotten mixed up in the wrong crowd. Lucky for him, Brittany had loved him enough to intervene. When he spoke it was obvious that he was intelligent. Miss Carolyn noticed dyslexia tenancies as they talked. She asked him about it and he admitted that he had been in a dyslexia program. With that discovery, Miss Carolyn had more faith in his ability to master the GED test. Experience had taught her that people with dyslexia are very intelligent. Their brains just process written language in a different way. If someone reads the material to them, they can learn it.
Over the weekend, Miss Carolyn told her husband about Charles. “Well can you get him some books that he could read?” Dwight asked.
“We would need to go to a large bookstore. Most bookstores don’t carry those books.”
“There are special books?”
“Yes, they are called Hi-Lo books. It stands for High Interest/Low Readability.”
“Well let’s go get some.”
They made a special trip to a large bookstore where Miss Carolyn spent almost an hour selecting books for Charles. It was difficult to find books that he could read, but weren’t written for children. Finally, books in tow, they left the bookstore.
The following week, Miss Carolyn sent Charles a message by way of email that she needed to see him. He made arrangements with his boss to leave work early to see Miss Carolyn. When he walked in the classroom, he had a quizzical look on his face. “Did you want to see me? Is something wrong?”
“No, not at all. I have something for you.” She brought out the books. One by one she showed him the books. They discussed each one. “This one is called Treasure Island. It is a classic. You are going to love it.” Then she showed him two other books. Finally, she looked at him and said, “I saw this one on the way out of the store and I couldn’t leave without it.” She reached in the bag and pulled out a book called My First Book. “This one is for Emily, but I want you to read it to her. Research shows that children who are read to by their parents do better in school.”
The tears in his eyes showed his feelings. “Thank you for getting these books for me. Most of all, thank you for getting that book for Emily. My parents didn’t read to me and I had a hard time in school. I don’t want Emily to have a hard time. I want her to be smart like Brittany. I’ll do anything I can to help her.”
Over the next two months Charles and Miss Carolyn worked hard to help him achieve success on the GED. After he received his diploma, he began applying for better jobs. He was a good worker and it didn’t take long for him to land a job. After a while, he and Brittany married and moved to a larger apartment.
It has been five years since Miss Carolyn taught Charles that with a little change in thinking, he could accomplish anything. Or did Charles teach Miss Carolyn?
“Michael, get up. You’re going to be late for school.” Regina called.
“Coming Mom.” It was the answer Regina wanted to hear, but she saw no evidence of her son’s appearance in the kitchen where he should have been ten minutes ago.
Michael entered the room in his blue coveralls. They matched his mother’s and father’s. In fact, they matched the residents of everyone in the city. The President and Congressmen had gotten tired of the school shootings stemming from jealousy and decided to get rid of it all together. They drew up the pattern and had one piece coveralls made for everyone in the country. Color was assigned by city. It was required attire and one had no choice about what to wear. At one time, it seemed like a good idea. It eliminated jealousy and the need to waste time in the morning deciding what to wear. It also made everyone equal. There was no long any rich or poor. It was just people in their blue coveralls or whatever color they were assigned.
“Look in the compartment and see what the cooks sent for your breakfast.” Regina told her son.
Michael went over to the wall of compartments. It looked like a wall of small cabinets stacked on top of each