Walking through the halls of our high school, I often end up engaging in random class discussions I overhear as I pass. A few weeks ago, I popped my head into our Honors English 11 class and a student asked me, “Mrs. Carter, what was an obstacle you have had to overcome in your life?” I immediately launched into the story of adopting our son, Isaac. Many of our high school students already know this story, but I never miss the chance to talk about him or his role in my life. I spoke to the fear and uncertainty that comes with the journey of adoption, which almost 20% of our families can relate to. I divulge to our students about the excitement of finally having a child to take home to our nursery, and the heartbreak it brings me to know there are mothers (and fathers) out in this world that are forced to make these choices.
Having an adult talk about something that is so personal, but so familiar, is one of the most important things we can do for our young people. We want them to learn perseverance, but it can often be difficult for adults to discuss their moments of doubt or struggle with children. I recognize that discussions of adoption can also be difficult for some of our students who are wrestling with their own identity or adoption story, but in general most of our kids love to hear about my journey and unapologetic obsession and love for my son.
Our theme for September is Perseverance, and it seems very fitting given the current state of North Carolina. Our students can relate to the idea of perseverance easily when we talk about pushing through to the end of a test, or finishing that last sentence in the paragraph. But, the concept of perseverance is a very adult, very grown-up idea. Each and every one of us is put in positions throughout our lifetime where we have a choice to persevere or to give-up.
The hurricane has brought unimaginable devastation to our fellow North Carolinians. Noble Academy is making a plan to contribute to the recovery efforts in whatever small way we can. Our children are getting ready to witness one of the most incredible tests of perseverance they will have seen in their short lifetimes. It is a great time to have conversations at home about times when you or someone you know has persevered. Talking about these opportunities helps to give students hope - hope that even the toughest obstacles can be overcome and that they are surrounded by strong, capable people who have persevered.