106. Grade

          In Grade one a boy died of appendicitis; his desk sitting empty in front of me for the rest of the  year.  I had a great, grade one teacher even if I was sent to the corner for speaking out of turn.  My grade two experience was the square dancing and playing pick up sticks with a girl who had matching dresses and shoes that came from her New York actress mother.

          Grade three my writing was chosen to be displayed on a wall.  I was still in the basement of the school.  Grade four I saw a boy receive the strap.  Grade five I learned quite a bit about music.  I can still see the teacher placing pieces of paper with the chords C, D, & G, tapping his foot to the paper we were to play the chord while he played the accordian.  I was intrigued when told Eskimo women (now called Inuit) breastfed their babies according to my grade six teacher who had lived with them.

          I was able to wear a pink, tent dress to my first, grade seven dance.  Grade eight saw the teacher enter a psychiatric hospital and I always wondered if it was because of student’s actions; like a classmate’s placing an Oh Henry bar on the floor after he walked by and catcalling his name.  Grade nine I realized I did not like math, algebra or geometry or wonder now if maybe it was the teacher’s method.  Grade ten I was into sports; basketball, volleyball, curling and whatever I could be a participant.  Grade eleven I wanted good grades and worked hard to pass classes. Grade twelve I remember as a fun year, being a school representative council member as well as very involved as a leader in sports.

          I have quite good memories of school but did not feel I had made the grade, taking employment rather than going to university after travelling the first year out of secondary.  That not good enough feeling plagued me for most of my life.  I did eventually begin taking university correspondence classes and then entered a social work program which I completed.

          I wanted to change the world.  I still have that tendency but am learning to change myself.  That brings me to the song of the day.

          My throat has some things                   To say to the world

          It’s all about                                          Being a girl

          A girl turned woman                             Is on the inside

          Can sleep easy now                               Be my own best bride

          Caring for others                                   And caring for self

          Crack open again                                  Let out my dream

          A better world                                       Without abuse

          My words, my songs                             Put to use

          Living life easy                                       Can come to pass

          And I can be                                          Free at last

          Listen inside                                          Hear me out

          Put me first                                           And if in doubt

          Quiet down                                           Meditate

          Renew again                                         Review will wait

          We have time                                       It’s worth the wait

          We have time                                        To celebrate

          Being me                                               As no one else

          And yet we’re all                                   Part of SELF

          Crashing On                                           Like waves at Sea

          How hard it is                                        Sometimes to be Me


                                                                        November 20, 2014

—Ellen Sagh

summer:  306 382-5204
winter      480 373-1734
writings:   ellensagh.com

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