Monday, March 26, 2018

How An Art Teacher Changed The Way I Thought About Myself

When I was in college I took an art class because I was going to be a photographer and they made you take an art class for that degree. I'm not an artist. I've never been able to draw more than a stick figure. (A side story, around this same time I taught the 9-year-old kids in our church and one lesson I had drawn a river up on the board and they asked why I drew bacon. haha. Not an artist). Anyway, one day in class while I was trying to draw something that would look kind of like what it was supposed to look like my teacher passed by me and just said: "you are such a fighter". I wasn't sure what to think of that. I laughed and wondered what she meant. I ended up changing my major and going for a psychology degree instead, but I always thought about that day and thought it was pretty funny and never knew what she meant by it. Was it a good thing, was it a compliment?

It took me a while but I realized that I start thinking about that every time I start running again. On Saturday I was able to go out for a run. I did a mile and a half at a really easy pace, stopping if I need to...but it felt really really good. There was no pain in my knee at all!  I hope this continues so that I can keep it up. When I was running I started thinking about that again and I've decided that I like that about myself.

I thought about how in high school I was injured every year. There was always something I was dealing with. But I loved to run and I hated the idea of feeling weak and giving up. Giving up was never an option for me. I would come back from an injury with an even bigger desire to prove that I could improve and do better than last time.

I thought about how I've dealt with depression my whole life. I've fought it and struggled with it but never gave up on life. I want to be happy. I want to show people that there is always something worth fighting for. There's always something to be thankful for and happy about.

It seems that being a fighter has been a pattern in my life and I've decided that, while it can become really annoying and exhausting to have my struggles in life (every single person has their thing, their struggle. I know I'm not alone on that.) I love that people think of me as a fighter. And I'm not going to be giving up anytime soon!

Having a teacher say that to me became something that helps me shape my life. It's helping me make hard decisions. It's kind of become something of a mantra for me. When things get hard I can hear my teacher saying to me "you're such a fighter". It helps me find that extra fight to keep going.

I know that this is going to be something I will be needing to remind myself as I get back into running.  There will, undoubtedly, be hard runs that I feel like absolutely zero progress has been made and there will be runs (very soon) that will make me feel like I've lost every ounce of fitness that I've ever had. But that's not going to stop me.  I'm a fighter and I will keep fighting every step of the way!

Has anyone ever said something to you that stayed with you all your life?

Is there one teacher who changed your life?
I don't know if I'd ever think of this teacher changing my life, she changed my thinking but she wasn't a teacher that I ever think about being a favorite or learning much from. I do have a coach and a piano teacher that changed my life!

Are you a good artist? 


  1. I love this story. I was really lucky to have a few teachers that had a big impact on me. I can still hear my college math teacher saying "Just don't give up. Don't ever give up."

    1. I love that! What an awesome teacher. I hope you always remember that and never give up. Have a great day Laura