Wednesday, August 25, 2010


 Hello, my little one!
Welcome to my world.
Your first breaths
become my last
breaths I ever breathe
without thinking of you.
And as you lie upon my chest
nestled close to my heart,
I wonder what being a mommy will hold
as I smile and breathe in your delicious baby smell
and promise not to blink.

But I must have….

Because now you are learning to walk
One toddler foot in front of another
Your dancing eyes lock on mine
determination oozing from your beaming smile.
You can do it…you can do it.
And you do
as I smile and breathe in your delightful giggle
and promise not to blink.

But I must have…

Because now you are trying to ride a bike
Wobbling, weaving, zigging and zagging.
Slowly, my steadying hand
becomes less necessary.
You can do it…you can do it.
And you do.
as I smile and breathe in your exhilarating joy.
And promise not to blink

But I must have…

Because now you are entering
First grade…
Middle School…
High School…
You can do it… you can do it
And you do.
As I smile and breathe in the wonder of the woman
standing next to me.
preparing for life on her own
miles and miles away from home
yet still so close to my heart.
Wondering what waits for you now,
I must remind myself to breathe.
I can do it….I can do it.

“Welcome to your world, my little one.
Take a deep breath
…and promise me you won’t blink.”

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Some moments wrap so tightly around me, I have no choice but to write them down. So it was with the May morning breeze cooling off an otherwise overheated week, that I glanced around the fields of Colerain High School at the mixture of teens and teachers and had to smile.
A week earlier, we finally received the results of the test that holds our students’ sophomore year hostage. Thankfully our banner can stay –we are excellent once again.
Now it was time for our OGT party.
And amid donuts and Deejays, the teenagers mingled among their teachers while the tunes of country, pop, and hip-hip hugged the air.
And that’s when I smiled.
As a Sophomore English teacher I understand the importance of the Ohio Graduation Test. I get the significance it can hold for my students as well as my district. Still, sometimes as much as we try to make the necessary information palatable, it seems we teachers must spend months cramming test answers down our students’ throats instead of feeding them morsels of knowledge to whet their academic appetites.
And perhaps it was this fact combined with the juxtaposition of the mild mini moment of the party coupled with the intenseness of the end of the year academic demands, and the worry of piling up papers to grade, that made me stop and take notice. But when I looked out and saw teachers and students laughing, bouncing soccer balls, hula-hooping and just sharing this time together, I had an “aha!” moment.
For, standing before me were not test scores and statistics.
No, standing before me were the adults and teenagers I had worked closely with to get as many across the finish line as possible. Sadly, some students remain shy of the goal, while, happily, others have flown past any preconceived success estimation. But that day we celebrated the coordinated effort of so many individuals working together, culminating in just having fun together.
And as I was competing in my own hula-hoop contest with one of my students, she giggled at me and said, “Mrs. Bundy, when I’m a senior and look back –this is going to one of my best memories from high school.”
Now, that is an excellent rating that beats any banner or ribbon anywhere.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Judgement Day

At the end of the seventeen hour journey, the trophy proclaiming second runner-up was positioned next to the Grand Champion trophy. Although the smaller award was admittedly dwarfed in the shadow of the previous week's impressive prize, it represented something mere size can't measure.
The high school Show Choir met at 7 a.m. on that Saturday to travel to their destination in another state for an all-day competition that culminated months of practicing everything from singing and dancing, to presentation and production, to articulation and attitude. Coming off the grand champion victory of the previous week, the teen's spirits were high. They walked into the venue with a confidence that belongs to champions.
Unfortunately, the wheel of good fortune spun that day and landed on the judges proclaiming them third place in the preliminaries. And for a while this affected the way they saw themselves. They were the same award-winning, awe-inspiring, talented kids that walked into that competition. It's just they stopped believing that's who they were the moment someone else deemed them less deserving than the best. The performers had forgotten that others can judge us, but they can't define us.
The teens themselves had not changed. Perhaps this week, a pose wasn't held long enough, or a note went sharp, but that didn't change the definition of who those teenagers were.
At last by the finals, they finally seemed to realize this. They didn’t give up. They regrouped and reclaimed their winning spirit. This goose-bump-inducing performance would leave the audience recognizing beyond a doubt that they were winners. Receiving the second runner-up trophy didn't change the triumphant definition of who they were in the least. In some ways it represented the heart of a champion even more than the colossal trophy of the week before. True, we all like coming in first. Winning is good. And we certainly need to encourage our children to strive to be the best they can be, not settling for less than we know they are capable of. But when we allow those judging us to have the power to define us, we lose sight of who we are and who God intended us to be.
After all, He is the one who originally defined each of us and ultimately is the only one whose judgment actually matters at all.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Lessons Learn from Haiti

Things we learned about Haiti this week:
• It makes up one-third of the second largest island in the Caribbean.
• The capital is Port-au-Prince.
• Haiti is one of poorest countries in the Western hemisphere.
• 80% of its residents live in poverty. Things we learned about earthquakes this week:
• The largest recorded earthquake in the world was 9.5 on the Richter scale in Chile in 1960.
• Haiti’s quake rocked their world with a 7.0 .

Things we learned about people this week:
• They are resilient: The Haitian people, while waiting for help to come, began their own rescue missions. This often resulted in heroes, battered, bruised, and barefoot, frantically digging with bare hands to try to find a sign of life buried under layers and layers of crushed buildings.
• They want to help: The spirit of help began to formulate around the world even before the last tremor of the quake was felt. Churches, schools, charities and individuals began to collect money, canned goods, water, and various personal items in hopes of somehow sending a bit of a band aid to a country with such a horrific gapping wound.
Things we learned about God this week:
• He uses it all: Strength can be found in weakness. Hope can be found in despair. Joy can be found in suffering.

And now that we know all we know, what we decide to do with this information will help determine the answer to another question: “What did God learn about us this week?”