February has been a busy month, what with the heart project and Jump Rope for Heart and Valentine's Day--the month is only half over! My heart has been filled with the spirit of giving this month!
A couple of weeks ago, I got a notification in my facebook inbox about a "Cut-A Thon", a local fundraiser for a small child suffering from cancer. I glanced at it quickly and assumed it was a request for me to participate in "Locks of Love". I've had very long hair for the last couple of decades. I cut it once, on a whim (and donated my hair), and was terribly unhappy for several years until it grew back. My long red locks have essentially become a part of my identity. I was not sure I was ready to cut my hair again, but the fundraiser was in 2 days. After much thought, I finally decided that I wanted to do it. I would donate my locks in honor of the sweet little girl whose mom had sent me the invitation. Hannah is doing pretty well now, but I remember her last year, bald and frail, with a beautiful sunny spirit. I'm so thankful for the wonderful families I teach. Sometimes, one of those special families come along and we just bond. I've come to grow quite close to Hannah and her family. I decided to go through with it, but was too scared to let Hannah's family know. I was too afraid I'd back out at the last minute.
The morning of the fundraiser came and I felt pretty good about it. I was ready! I pulled up to the salon and there were people everywhere, in lines inside and out. I made my way to the reception counter and began to tear up just a little, as I told the girl I wanted to cut my hair for Locks of Love. At that moment, I felt a slam against my legs from behind, hugging me tight. I turned, and there was my Hannah. "Mrs. Ayn!" she exclaimed. I finished checking in and walked over to where her family was seated. The whole family was there, all getting haircuts--Mom, Dad, Grandma, Hannah and her 2 younger sisters, Alyssa and Brenna. When I told Hannah's mom that I wanted to donate my locks in Hannah's honor, they all decided to stay and cheer me on.
It was a fabulous day! It's been an adjustment, but I haven't regretted it for a single second. It was truly one of the most beautiful moments of my life!
I have been teaching early childhood for about 20 years. I love what I do---it's the best job in the world!!! Where else can you go to work each day and do art, play games, have snack and get hugs regularly AND get paid for it?! I love to share ideas with other teachers and see what they are doing in their classrooms. Teaching is the best profession---we love to share!