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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Elementary School (07/19/04)

TITLE: 3rd Grade Trauma
By Jean Boulmay


When I think about my elementary school days, my mind goes directly to the 3rd grade! That day at school left a lasting impression on me.

The school day started pretty much the same as any day. I calmly walked into the schoolhouse and sat down in my seat (I did most things calmly). My seat just so happened to be located in rural Arkansas in a one-room schoolhouse that went up to 5th grade. The small building was surrounded by lots of trees that would shed their leaves in the fall (which would give us kids piles and piles of leaves to jump into during recess).

When recess came on this particular day, Tag was the game of choice. It was my turn and I was supposed to “tag” Susie. Well…..I tagged Susie alright…..right over her left eye with a broom! I hadn’t meant to get so excited that I would pick up the nearest item to help me reach Susie, it just happened. Susie, of course, burst into tears, and within minutes had a large (and I mean LARGE) black and blue lump over her eye that was as big as a basketball (maybe not, but that’s the way it appeared to me at the time). I felt so bad about hurting Susie, that the louder she cried, the more I cried. She quit crying long before I could control my own emotions. The educational value for the rest of that school day was totally and completely lost for me!

But, all was not lost, because I did come away with a knowledge that I NEVER wanted to be responsible for hurting another person.

It has been several years since that day in 3rd grade. I wish I could say I have never again hurt anyone, but it would not be true. I haven’t whacked anyone with a broom lately, but must admit I have been responsible for causing hurt by my words and deeds.

Experience has taught me to rely on God to get through this life, not only without causing minimal damage (not enough for me to just not throw brooms), but to be a vessel through which good words and deeds flow.

Susie and I never did become best friends.

Member Comments
Member Date
darlene hight07/26/04
Excellant article!And maybe a new game has been invented Broom tag.LOL
Angela Moore07/26/04
I had a similar experience in my early school years and you brought it all rushing back! Ha ha! It seemed so traumatic at the time. Now, it makes me smile. Thank you for sharing.
Lynda Lee Schab 07/26/04
Wonderful article! I guess the term, "hurts me more than it will hurt you" applies here. It IS traumatic to be the one who causes the hurt! Loved the touch of humor - well done!
Blessings, Lynda Schab
Deborah Anderson07/26/04
A good lesson here to be gleaned out of your story. Thank you and God bless you in Jesus Name.
L.M. Lee07/26/04
what a tale! Oh I can just imagine how terrible you felt!
Melanie Kerr 07/26/04
"Susie and I never did become best friends." There's a surprise! It is often the case that we don't intend to hurt people, but they get hurt.
Marcell Billinghurst07/26/04
Life is full of memories and traumas along the way. You have shown a good lesson was learnt this experience. God bless you in your writing
Dan Blankenship 07/28/04
Very nice. Brooms can be bad, very bad!

God Bless.
Dan Blankenship
Karen Treharne07/28/04
I can sure relate to this, Jean. I'm sorry you two never became good friends, but sometimes when we make our "first impression", it's not in our favor no matter how innocent or appologetic we might be. You have humor in your writing that makes it fun to read your story. And why do we always so easily remember those traumatic times? The embarrassing times? The times we really want to forget and don't want to talk about? It's just not right, that's all. But since I know that God plans ALL situations in our life, I will just keep looking for the lesson He must be trying to teach me. Thanks for sharing a very enjoyable read.