Miss J is amazing. She astounds me. She humbles me.
I've been mostly sharing about M and the journey we've been on with him, but tonight I feel the need to share about Miss J.
I want to share a conversation I had with her when she was just five years old. She was in kindergarten at the time. She had studied Martin Luther King at school that January. In February, she studied Abraham Lincoln. Miss J is a regular Sunday School attendee and Easter was upon us and she was learning about the life of Jesus..
We'd been in the car and she was not her usual very chatty self. She was more quiet, pensive, deep in thought. I asked her if everything was okay. She said she was thinking. She told me she was thinking about the different people she'd been learning about in school and church. We began talking about all that she had learned and how these people had helped shape our world.
I told her, "Miss J, these people did some very amazing things. I have no doubt you will be like them one day."
"No. No, I won't." she said.
"How can you say that?" I asked her. "You are so kind, so bright, so good hearted. You have amazing ideas. I know that you could change the world."
I was puzzled. Did my five year old doubt herself? Was she struggling with self-esteem? At five?
"Why would you say such thing, J?"
"Because mama. If you have good ideas, and you share them with the world...they kill you. And you die."
I got it. Martin Luther King Jr. Abraham Lincoln. Jesus. All intelligent, outspoken, pioneers for change in the world. All killed because of it.
This is my Miss J. This is my girl for whom I sometimes cannot find the right words for. My girl who sometimes makes me wonder if I am worthy of her.