View From Here
By Katherine Veno
A setback is
Thomas Edison, the inventor of the light bulb, was said to call failure an
education. When I force myself to sit back and remember that famous quote,
it helps me overcome failures both large and small.
Trying to learn from my mistakes and failures, I have found that giving
myself freedom to fail in life also gives me the opportunity to grow and
If I never take a risk on anything, I will be safe, miserable and most
likely bored and boring. Because I have lived my entire life taking great
leaps of faith, I really have had few days when I was restless and bored. I
am my own best entertainer.
We cannot depend upon others to make our lives worthwhile, we have to do it
ourselves. Others are not responsible, nor did they contribute anything to
our own failures in life. Worrying about what people think of our behavior
is a waste of time. It causes all sorts of trouble like rising blood
pressure and stress, leading to lots of mistakes. Just let it go.
Failure often forces us to re-evaluate our priorities and what is most
important to us. A setback in life makes us pay attention to detail. If I am
an instant success at everything I try, I will be arrogant, lazy and
complacent, not to mention, terrible company for others.
If my greatest fear is being alone, I will jump into friendships,
relationships in spite of friends and family saying slow down. If you fear
it, you will create it.
Learning to get over failure is not easy, but it is achievable and we should
become better people for it, not bitter and frightened to take a chance and
In life, we are going to get our feelings hurt by other people. Some will
leave scars and will affect how we think, act and relate for the rest of our
Put-downs, critical comments, gossip and ridicule are all part of the sad
rejection we feel. For some of us when we get hurt, all we want to do is
The trick here is to remember you are lovable, capable, forgivable,
acceptable, valuable, beautiful, worthy and wonderful. Go forward. Do not
surround yourself with negative people. Do not waste your energy and love on
somebody who is incapable of returning your love.
Love yourself. Remember you may try and not succeed, but you do not need
approval from anyone but yourself.
By Emily Gail Lundy
school years pivotal...
Someone has said, “Your entire life is based on the time you spent in high
Though high school does not determine your looks or appearance at, let’s
say, 39, or your position in life, people you loved or ran with in high
school can be forever with you, or forgotten completely.
As a grown-up, unless you live by your parents, you may find you have to
settle your own battles, your own destiny, and mostly, your own experiences.
Just never be too big to forget where you came from, who made you.
High school can prepare you for the failures and mistakes you will likely
make, maybe suffer from, and those who mature know they have only self to
During youth, it may seem punishment is too severe for minor things whereas
some really bad stuff goes untouched or seen even as routine. Of course,
it’s easier to chastise for the little things, i.e. dress code infractions,
not as much flak, not as much retaliation. While bigger things like,
bullying goes unaddressed.
An incident in my husband’s life surprised me. He said as he and a few
siblings walked to and from elementary school on a country road, a one-day
cousin by marriage would wait to beat someone up. Every day. One day the
one-day cousin chose my husband’s pretty, older sister and hit her too hard,
where he shouldn’t have. She ran home crying. Her dad took care of it
somehow, and the bullying stopped.
Ranting about hair too long has taken up more teaching time than any other,
while bullying has always been with us but only now being seriously
Mean students have always been around, not just since 1990. Today, not just
boys, but girls too can turn a Granny’s face sallow with words that are
atrocious, nasty and vulgar.
Taking a serious look at my own freshmen and sophomore years, I was bullied
verbally. I was too skinny. My laugh was annoying. I was a “goody-two-shoes”
and too naive for my own safety. I liked a boy, a senior hunk, and a senior
girl liked him too. Neither of us had a chance with a boyfriend/girlfriend
relationship, but this older girl made my life a living hell at any break
time, especially outside.
When this girl would see me and begin her barrage on my being, I learned to
leave, find a place of safety or fun by my ownself and act as though that
was what I wanted to do.
Few teachers can eliminate bullying. Some have skits or the right words, but
backfire comes easily. The one being protected by a teacher can get harassed
horribly outside school perimeters. Changing schools may help, but can also
be impossible or be no better.
My one success at stopping cruelty came when a new student enrolled into one
of my senior English classes. For all his previous life he had been deaf;
then miraculous surgery had reversed his situation. He could HEAR. But few,
including his parents, realized ALL he had missed those 17 years of silence,
and my class was hard for him.
He sat at the front, repeatedly asked questions the other students didn’t
need to ask. I saw how they made faces when this young man spoke, I heard
their whispered remarks, I sensed the disdain.
One day I sent the young man on an errand to the office, down a long
hallway. Risking a bad conclusion, I “took off” on my other class members,
telling them how badly this new student wanted to catch up with his peers,
make good grades, but he had missed much of life they hadn’t; he was at an
When the student returned with whatever I had wanted, my students were
silent. Then in work time, two or three asked if this young man needed help
and showed him how they were starting out. Another walked with him out of
the room when the bell rang. I was never so proud of a group of young
Soon this new student was gone as other authorities realized he could not
leap into the normal world without more preparation. He even made A’s in his
new English class, and I congratulated him wishing I had known how to treat
him without making his work look easier.
Some teachers can bully students themselves. Even in elementary school, I
realized two different times, the same teacher chose a girl to pick-on,
ridicule, or shame. I wasn’t old enough to explain this action but could
There’s a thin line between bullying and teasing. I have a theory that has
proved true. Make fun of someone for a physical or even mental reason, and
you will have this return to you as your own child or someone you love
My only advice for bullying that is mental is for the one signaled out to
smile, act as though it’s OK if possible, and seek someone to like you as
you are no matter how long it takes. They are somewhere. If you have to eat
by yourself, read, and act as if you prefer to eat alone. One day you will
be out of this situation and call your own shots I hope.
If bullying is physical, painful, humiliating and on Facebook or pieced
together falsely into a picture, search out the culprits, and save the worst
punishment for them like permanent expulsion. One more tidbit: students not
happy at school should have a warm, loving environment at home.