Nothing prepares you as a teacher for the death of a student. That is nothing they can teach you in college. On October 5, 2008, one of my former students met Jesus. Her name was Savannah. I called her Banana. She was in my class in second grade and then again in fifth grade. You know, as a teacher, when there is a special child in your classroom. One that will touch your heart. One that you will never forget. Savannah was that child for me. She had a laugh that would make you laugh no matter what kind of day you were having. She was creative. Always writing. She was a poet. She was a pleaser. She was the kind of kid that made you glad you chose teaching as your profession. I remember when she was in my second grade class she decided she didn’t want to be called Savannah anymore she wanted to be called Danielle, her middle name. The last time Savannah was in my class she was in fifth grade. I could see then what a wonderful person she was turning out to be and I was so proud. Savannah was a senior this year. So much life ahead of her. She and I had just reconnected about two weeks ago through facebook. We “talked” about all of the things she remembered from my class. I couldn’t believe how much she remembered. I’m so glad I have that now. There are so many questions I’ve asked God this week. Most of them are prefaced with one simple word: why? I just don’t understand so much. She talked to me about college. It wasn’t like she wasn’t looking forward to things…One thing I do know and have no questions about is where Savannnah is now. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt she is loving on Jesus right now. Savannah knew Jesus in a way I admire and in a way that sometimes doesn’t seem possible for someone her age. I know I will see her again someday. The pain in my heart is still there and probably will be for some time now. But there is also joy. Joy that I will see her again someday. We’ll dance with the angels together.
I love you Savannah Banana! You were and always will be an inspiration to me.