Aug. 27, 2018

SOMEBODY LOVES ME...

In my book "THE BEAUTY QUEEN", I write a letter to the Little Girl in me. She hides deep inside me... few people know her.  She is, without a doubt, my best friend. Because of her, I was able to survive my Mother.  Because of her I write daily, share my thoughts.  For some reason, I woke up today and remembered Sister Stephen Maria, my first grade teacher.  I felt motivated to share this memory of her from my book:  

"Little Girl, you and I know each other well. We know that love comes and goes and sometimes those we love don’t love us back. But you are strong; you continue to live beyond the ugliness and unpleasantness.

When you  were young, even after you started school, you played dress-up for hours. Posing, pretending, and make believe, were your favorite pasttimes. The image looking back at you in the bedroom mirror was always me, your best friend.

In a crazy-sort-of-way, you made another friend. Wearing the traditional black habit, Sister Stephen Maria was your first grade teacher at Annunciation Academy, a private Catholic school in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. You were one of six protestant children in the Academy’s first grade and you made certain you weren’t overlooked.

I smile when I recall the day Mother Superior telephoned your parents. The Catholic community had been horrified to learn of a recess incident involving Sister Stephen Maria and a non-Catholic student.

YOU were that student, the one who—during morning recess--innocently asked Sister Stephen Maria if she wore black underwear.

Scholastically, you were graded as the smartest student in the first grade but your curiosity and endless questions kept you in constant “hot water.”

Without a doubt, your most challenging question for Sister Stephen Maria was: “Sister, why is Jesus’s mother called the Virgin Mary? Why can’t we call her Sister Mary, or Mother Mary, or simply, Mary? What does the word VIRGIN mean?” Now you understand why Sister didn’t answer but instead, began choking and ran from the classroom.

Decades later, long after Sister Stephen Maria died, you learned about a scrapbook containing newspaper photos/articles that was found among her handful of worldly possessions. 

The scrapbook was titled: The Beauty Queen Life of Sally Miller."