forty touches :: 4

tammie bennett's 40touches project to celebrate her turning 40 in march by posting every day about someone who has had a positive impact on her life.

to celebrate turning 40, i'm posting a sketch and short writeup of a moment or a person who has touched my life in a positive way.  i will post each day until i turn 40 in march.  

#4 is a woman whose name i don't know. 

in 5th grade my family was very poor.  i was not a popular kid and i was bullied without mercy when the queen mean-girl decided it was my turn. (when it wasn't my turn they welcomed me into their group and laughed at my jokes, which made it all the more confusing.)

in the days of jelly shoes, esprit and benetton, i had none.  i did have fake jelly shoes which were a size too small, but i wanted them so desperately i didn't tell my mom that they didn't fit.  and after we walked a few miles home from the shopping mall because we had no car, my feet were raw and blistered from the cheap, stiff plastic.

so anyway, that's a little background.  

it was career day at school and i had chosen modeling.  a woman from a local modeling agency came to our classroom to teach us how to apply makeup and how to walk the runway.  she didn't have time to demonstrate makeup on everyone, so she said she could only choose one girl.  she chose me.  she said i had good cheekbones.  she put makeup on my face while all the girls crowded around in awe and wonder at this undiscovered beauty in their midst.  i walked the runway to walking on sunshine while they stood and cheered.  i forgot all about my chipped front tooth, the dark circles under my eyes, and the orange shade of hair that nobody else had.  and i felt beautiful.

now that i'm a grown up i know that she saw my flaws but she chose me anyway, or more likely chose me because of those things.  maybe she saw that i was bullied and poor and she wanted to give me a boost, to make me feel like a beautiful girl even if only for a moment.  maybe she saw in my eyes that little spark of fire i carried with me, knowing that someday i would be something great.  maybe she saw that even though i was poor, in clothing that didn't fit, with a tooth my family couldn't afford to fix, i still chose modeling.  i still had hope.  

it doesn't matter her reason.  all that matters is that she gave me a gift and i wish i could thank her.  


see my other #40touches posts here.  

i will be publishing my 40touches posts in no particular order.  i acknowledge that negative moments have also had an impact on my life, but seeing as how this is a celebration project, i won't be posting those.  

also, i am choosing to only mention 40 because i'm turning 40, and therefore i can't possibly mention all the people, places or moments that have touched me in a positive way.  this is just a sampling that i thought would be fun to talk about and include.

i hope this encourages you to reach out to those who have touched your life in some way.