I’ve got your back

I have always believed that books find me.  You know when you are searching through stacks of books at a library or when you have a list of authors and the book  you want is not on the shelf?  But hey,! your eyes are drawn to the title or the book jacket of the book next to where your find should have been.  You take out the book, read a bit about the author, perhaps a snippet about the novel and you bring it home. You discover you truly enjoy this author and you read several of his or her published works. You have made a new friend, the characters in the book are a part of your life for a little while.  Has that ever happened to you?

I find that happens with people too.  Some people come into your life because you were meant to meet…there is a reason, a purpose. Years ago when I was completing my internship as a Family Life Educator, I became closer with my supervisor and my mentor.  My mentor became a good friend, a confidante and spiritual guide in many ways.  I aspired to be like her…if only a tiny morsel of her some day.  She was a very compassionate person.

When I completed my internship, I was hired on contract to continue offering life skill workshops for the rest year at this community clinic. My friend and mentor, had worked as a Family Life Educator at a private school on the hill of our beautiful city, for almost 10 years.  She wanted to take a sabbatical and complete her degree in English Literature. (I never saw the relationship with writing and English there too considering how much I have turned to writing in the past year.)   She asked me if I would replace her at the school and she would recommend me to the headmistress for an interview.

I was so excited.  I had returned to university as a mature student, graduating in a less conventional degree than our province was familiar in the francophone community, so finding work, I was aware, would be a bit of a challenge.  So many institutions were not familiar with the intensive and comprehensive programme our department that Applied Social and Human Sciences offered students especially with our rigorous applied characteristic. We had to apply much of our learning to ourselves, be in counselling if we wanted to pursue counselling courses and to take our learning to a higher level and an option to take part in the internship and be certified.  But, all this hard work was not known, hence not recognized  in our province. This opportunity D was offering me was a godsend!  A great way to improve on my skills as well as get experience.  So I said, yes.

A few weeks later, I had an appointment for the interview.  I was so nervous. I had let my punk shaved head hairdo grow out a bit and it was now a more natural colour (did away with the orange or purple) and dark blonde on a short bob looked just right.  I wore a long skirt and blazer with pumps (not time to wear my comfy Doc Martens) and arrived twenty minutes before my scheduled time.  I was so impressed driving up Mount Pleasant in my humble Renaud V…up, up, up, the steep hill avoiding the rear-view mirror as I would visualize my car flipping over backwards.  The houses around this school were like being somewhere in England with the old and beautiful  stone houses; they were spectacular!

I sat quietly across the secretary’s desk. She had a nice warm smile. I sat and admired the woodwork on the walls, the dark stained molding and started to get a bit nervous.  I decided to freshen up before the interview. The washroom was just in front of the secretary’s desk.   Final check in the mirror, lipstick applied, hair in place, I went to take my seat and waited again.  The secretary got a buzz, and that was the headmistress calling me into her office. I thanked her and turned around to walk into the office when the secretary called me softly, “Um, you may want to adjust your skirt a bit before going in Madame G’s office.”  I place my the palm of my hand along my hips to smooth my skirt and as I reach the back I feel a huge bulge! My eyes widen, my face turns white, then beet red…At that moment I quickly turn facing the secretary still wide-eyed and tug my skirt out of my pantyhose so quickly…no one could have noticed except Ms. S and me. Phew! I just exhaled in a loud whisper, “Thank  you” with pleading eyes and went into the office.

I got the position and taught social skills and sex ed.  there for five years and Ms. S will forever be my friend and saviour…her offering that very first day, to me was like hearing, “I’ve got your back!” in more ways than one {smiles}.

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/04/04

Written for: Dungeon Prompts – Season 2, Week 14: Entertain with the Mundane

16 thoughts on “I’ve got your back

  1. lol! Thank heavens for her intervention! It’s a good thing she was comfortable telling the truth in such a loving and kind way. I wonder why people shy away from doing so? Like someone letting you know there’s spinach in your teeth. 😉

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    1. Or walking out a department store washroom with a long piece of toilet paper trailing behind…I tell people because I would so want them to tell me too. Thanks for reading. 🙂

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    1. I’ll see what I can dig up…when I graduated, the Dean of the department kept calling out my name; after 3 times, I said, Richard, I’m right here at the podium. “Oh,” he said, “Ididn’t recognize you without the punk hair!”

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  2. I want to see the punk hairdo too!

    I REALLY relate to your story. I wear long skirts in India. Two years ago I walked outside and within seconds someone yelled my name. Luckily she was a friend. I didn’t have panty hose on but the bottom of my skirt had gotten tucked up high somehow. Like you, I was very exposed in the back. I still cringe at the memory!

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