Double Rainbow

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away” – Anonymous
One of those moments for me is seeing a double rainbow.  Now, I’m not a science teacher, and I would be hard pressed to give an accurate description as to the reasons for this phenomenon.  Something about refraction and reflection I think, but what I do know is that no matter what I’m doing, a double rainbow stops me in my tracks.  The sense of unpredictability, fragility, and instability hits me, and I can’t take my eyes off it.  I’ve given up trying to snap a photo-it never seems to capture the intensity of color or splendor.  It is a moment that could be gone in an instant, best savored in ‘real-time’.
A friend of mine passed away last month.  He was exactly my age, was a teacher, married, and had two young kids, a boy and a girl-just like me.  Also like me, all he had really ever wanted to do and had done for a career is teach junior high.  He was a really, really nice guy-one of those people who everyone likes and is just happy all the time. Now, he’s gone.  He passed away as the school year was winding down, causing all of us who knew him to stop what we were doing and just grieve.
A few weeks ago his family held a celebration of his life.  Hawaiian shirts and baseball gear were the requested attire.  Although he didn’t live in Davis, he made an enormous impact on our community, especially noted by the numbers of former students who turned up at the memorial.  Teaching is one of those professions that doesn’t always allow us to see the impact we have on our students in the moment.  We move from day to day, month to month, and when we hit the 180 day mark our ‘term’ is over.  We say goodbye, sign yearbooks, give hugs and best wishes and they leave the classroom.  For me, it often seems like our time together was too short and I’ve still got more to teach.
What I’ve learned lately is that moments with people are unpredictable, fragile, and when looked at from the right perspective we can see everything in living color-ROYGBIV.  What I’m still learning is that moments and people may be gone in an instant, but the imprint they leave on us is what’s memorable.  And like the double rainbow I saw on the way home from the memorial, meant to be savored right now.

Jennifer Wolfe

Jennifer Wolfe, a writer-teacher-mom, is dedicated to finding the extraordinary in the ordinary moments of life by thinking deeply, loving fiercely, and teaching audaciously. Jennifer is a Google Certified Educator, Hyperdoc fanatic, and a voracious reader. Read her stories on her blog, mamawolfe, and grab free copies of her teaching and parenting resources.

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7 thoughts on “Double Rainbow

  1. Gosh, I loved this. So very true and good for us all to be reminded of this. Thank you for writing this!
    Michael Ann

  2. mamawolfe says:

    Thanks for your comment!

  3. Thomasina says:

    That was needed today! I was looking at my kids wondering pretty much the something. Feeling really anxious about the future and not savoring the now. Great post. vB

  4. mamawolfe says:

    Thanks, Thomasina. Sometimes it’s so hard to do-to focus on those small moments that we’re right in the middle of – but they can really make the difference when we’re struggling with bigger issues down the road of parenthood!

  5. Mommy2¢ says:

    Day in and day out we take for granted the time we have with one another; not really knowing if that will indeed be the last moments we’ll ever have. Such a sobering, yet true message!

    Thanks so much for linking up with us for Ghosts of Blogging Past! 🙂

  6. mamawolfe says:

    Hi Mommy2- I rarely take time for granted anymore…I’ve learned that lesson. Thanks for stopping by.

  7. […] 2011, two of my friends were diagnosed with brain cancer. One died six months later. One is still living. Both suffered through the debilitation of brain cancer, the rattling of their […]

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