Sunday, September 8, 2019

Thankful For That Helicopter!

There's an old joke about a man who was caught in a flood, and he had to climb onto his roof to escape the rising water. A man in a rowboat came by and told him to get in, but the man declined, saying, "I have faith in the Lord that He will save me." As the water continued to rise, a man in a speedboat appeared and told him to get in, but again, he declined, saying, "I have faith in the Lord that He will save me." The water rose higher, and a helicopter appeared above him. The pilot called out that he would lower a rope and pull him up, but the man refused and said, "I have faith in the Lord that He will save me."  Eventually, the waters rose so high that the man was swept off his roof and he drowned. When he arrived in Heaven, he said to God, "I had complete faith in you, and I prayed that you would save me, but you did nothing. Why?" And God replied, "I sent you two boats and a helicopter! What more did you expect?!"

As many of you know, I have taught pre-kindergarten for 18 years at a preschool that is held at my church. Enrollment has been declining for years, starting during the recession, and it has not improved. A little over a month ago, I learned that the enrollment was low enough that some classes might have to be combined. Two weeks ago, that became a reality, and my five mornings a week job was going to be reduced to two mornings a week.The rainfall that was the initial decline in enrollment had continued steadily and had now become a flood. 

I was sad and angry and hurt as I climbed up onto my roof. In the past few years, I had been visited by a rowboat and by a speedboat, but I didn't get in either of them. Angry with myself for that and for the unfairness of life, my tears mixed with the floodwaters as I clung to the roof.

Then a helicopter flew over and dropped me a rope the very same day that I got the news about my job: I saw an ad for a teacher at the child care center at our local university. I submitted my resume, took a deep breath, and hit send. The next day, they called me for an interview. A few days after the interview, they called and asked me if I would like to join their work family, and I did not hesitate; I grabbed that rope and climbed into the helicopter.

As you might imagine, my thankfuls this week are plentiful! 

1. I'm thankful I didn't wave that helicopter on!

2. I haven't interviewed for a job since 1993 when I got my job at Warner Bros. in Burbank, and I am thankful that I didn't muff it up.

3. I am very thankful for the kindness of my references. You know who you are....

4. I am thankful for all the wonderful relationships I made over 18 years at the preschool. The kids I taught there will always be "my" kids.

5. My new job is not teaching pre-kindergarten, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to do something different. I am working with the littlest littles at the school - one year olds. One. Year. Olds.

6. I've always said I wanted to be a professional baby holder. Now I am! They need a lot of holds and hugs, and there is nothing sweeter than being greeted by one of my littles with a sweet smile behind upheld arms. My heart!

7. The child care center recently moved to a new location, and the building has lots of windows and is bright and cheery.

8. There are student workers who help throughout the day and who currently know more about my job than I do, and I am VERY grateful for them!

9. I am now an employee of the university, and I get benefits.

10. My job is basically the same hours as my old job, so I am still able to do my afternoon gig at the photo studio.

Change can be good, even when we think it wasn't something we wanted.

Thanks for posting this, Wendy! Your timing was perfect!

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  1. Dyanne, I am forever grateful all 4 of my daughters had you as their PreK teacher. You loved them as your own and taught them well. I am also grateful to have you as a friend. Good luck in your new endeavor. These new littles will be blessed having you to love on them.

    1. Thank you SO MUCH, Jeanne! That means the world to me! I loved having your girls and have enjoyed the opportunity to keep watching them grow up! Will never, ever forget Caitlin throwing a raging fit and hurling her blanky and her shoes over the half door when she was in the primary room next door to me!

    2. I remember hearing about her woobie, but not the shoes.

  2. Wow! What a change. Those littles are going to love you and I have no doubt that they are going to get really attached to you too. Having a job that has benefits too is a real plus.
    So glad that another helicopter came by and you grabbed hold.

  3. A) I love this.
    B) I love this.
    C) I love you and am so happy that a beautiful rope dropped down. Lucky are the children who have had you as teacher, and lucky are the little ones you will cuddle.

  4. Thinking about you so much. This post has stuck with me this week for some reason, and I felt compelled to come back and comment here, even though I commented on your FB post. I think I needed your reminder that life and love and God does happen when we don't necessarily recognize it, and I'm so glad for you that you jumped on the helicopter. Huge success wishes and congratulations your way. xoxoxo

    1. Thank you so much, Kristi! Your comment really means the world to me. xxxooo

  5. I hope things are going well for you! Professional baby cuddler sounds like a great job! :-)

  6. One of my favorite jokes because it's so true.
    SO glad you heard that chopper!

    1. ME, TOO! That joke kept going through my head throughout this whole ordeal, and I finally LISTENED to that joke and acted!