fred02 Jul, 2014 07:10 PM
As she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of school, she told the children an untruth. Like most teachers, she looked at her students and said that she loved them all the same. However, that was impossible, because there in the front row, slumped in his seat, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard.
Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he did not play well with the other children, that his clothes were messy and that he constantly needed a bath. In addition, Teddy could be unpleasant.
It got to the point where Mrs. Thompson would actually take delight in marking his papers with a broad red pen, making bold X's and then putting a big "F" at the top of his papers.
At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught, she was required to review each child's past records and she put Teddy's off until last. However, when she reviewed his file, she was in for a surprise.
Teddy's first grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is a bright child with a ready laugh. He does his work neatly and has good manners... he is a joy to be around.."
His second grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is an excellent student, well liked by his classmates, but he is troubled because his mother has a terminal illness and life at home must be a struggle."
His third grade teacher wrote, "His mother's death has been hard on him. He tries to do his best, but his father doesn't show much interest and his home life will soon affect him if some steps aren't taken."
Teddy's fourth grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is withdrawn and doesn't show much interest in school. He doesn't have many friends and he sometimes sleeps in class."
By now, Mrs. Thompson realized the problem and she was ashamed of herself. She felt even worse when her students brought her Christmas presents, wrapped in beautiful ribbons and bright paper, except for Teddy's. His present was clumsily wrapped in the heavy, brown paper That he got from a grocery bag Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in the middle of the other presents. Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone bracelet with some of the stones missing, and a bottle that was one-quarter full of perfume.. But she stifled the children's laughter when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was, putting it on, and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist. Teddy Stoddard stayed after school that day just long enough to say, "Mrs. Thompson, today you smelled just like my Mom used to." After the children left, she cried for at least an hour.
On that very day, she quit teaching reading, writing and arithmetic. Instead, she began to teach children. Mrs. Thompson paid particular attention to Teddy. As she worked with him, his mind seemed to come alive. The more she encouraged him, the faster he responded. By the end of the year, Teddy had become one of the smartest children in the class and, despite her lie that she would love all the children the same, Teddy became one of her "teacher's pets.."
A year later, she found a note under her door, from Teddy, telling* her that she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life.
Six years went by before she got another note from Teddy. He then wrote that he had finished high school, third in his class, and she was still the best teacher he ever had in life.
Four years after that, she got another letter, saying that while things had been tough at times, he'd stayed in school, had stuck with it, and would soon graduate from college with the highest of honors. He assured Mrs. Thompson that she was still the best and favorite teacher he had ever had in his whole life.
Then four more years passed and yet another letter came. This time he explained that after he got his bachelor's degree, he decided to go a little further. The letter explained that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had. But now his name was a little longer.... The letter was signed, Theodore F. Stoddard, MD.
The story does not end there. You see, there was yet another letter that spring. Teddy said he had met this girl and was going to be married. He explained that his father had died a couple of years ago and he was wondering if Mrs. Thompson might agree to sit at the wedding in the place that was usually reserved for the mother of the groom.
Of course, Mrs. Thompson did. And guess what? She wore that bracelet, the one with several rhinestones missing. Moreover, she made sure she was wearing the perfume that Teddy remembered his mother wearing on their last Christmas together.
They hugged each other, and Dr. Stoddard whispered in Mrs. Thompson's ear, "Thank you Mrs. Thompson for* believing in me. Thank you so much for making me feel important and showing me that I could make a difference."
Mrs. Thompson, with tears in her eyes, whispered back. She said, "Teddy, you have it all wrong. You were the one who taught me that I could make a difference. I didn't know how to teach until I met you."
(For you that don't know, Teddy Stoddard is the Dr. at Iowa Methodist Hospital in Des Moines that has the Stoddard Cancer Wing.)
Warm someone's heart today. . . pass this along. I love this story so very much, I cry every time I read it. Just try to make a difference in someone's life today? tomorrow? Just "do it".
Random acts of kindness, I think they call it?
"Believe in Angels, then return the favor."
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CommentsPost a Comment
04 Jul, 2014 11:02 PM
I was like this when my grandpa died. I was once the sweetest and the most encouraged until that happened. Since then I became really bad, had a lot of fights and eventually reading these stories.
11 Jul, 2014 10:56 AM
this is great touching story
18 Jul, 2014 07:12 AM
Wow, this story is so sad but can also teach you a lesson
22 Jul, 2014 12:13 PM
Wow...this story is so touching and encouraged me to make a difference in people life.
28 Jul, 2014 07:16 AM
I loved it. I thought I was going to cry in wich I did. ive never read something so touching
30 Jul, 2014 10:33 AM
Hmmm...still we hv a hope or more precisely we can be confident enough to gi to school not for getting educated bt to get learned. ....
04 Aug, 2014 12:23 PM
This story inspired me to create difference in some people's life. I loved the story. I hope that other people will get amazed by this story too as i am now.
I admire Mrs. Thompson and especially Teddy <3
28 Aug, 2014 02:01 PM
It really sad but with a happy endings, great story it really touching.
28 Aug, 2014 05:51 PM
It inspired me very touching.
31 Aug, 2014 05:47 PM
That was so nice i love that story
07 Sep, 2014 01:15 AM
This is such a beautiful story,I can't crying right now because just the way she help him is so beautiful,she was wrong at first but she turned that around and it inspires me to do sooo much because I'm going to be a teacher myself someday and that is the only reason why I want to be one,just to help children reach their dreams and just make them feel like they belong. This story touched me and I can't wait to actually do that. I dont have to wait till Im qualified I can start now. ?
23 Sep, 2014 12:57 PM
i cry every time i read this...God bless Teddy and Mrs. Thompson. What an inspiration!
27 Sep, 2014 09:20 PM
The story is so touching mrs thompson is a brave heart
02 Oct, 2014 11:52 AM
Very Good and Inspirational, thanks for sharing it.
07 Oct, 2014 07:44 PM
Wow this mad me tear up.
15 Oct, 2014 07:32 AM
This story reminds me of now since my granpa died ive always bedn mean and grump but before he did i was a loving caring girl with a bright smile
15 Oct, 2014 09:12 PM
Wow such a nice story..plenty of lessons to be learnt from this story..
17 Oct, 2014 02:59 AM
Everyone has a story.
27 Oct, 2014 09:02 PM
Omg this story is sad i can just cry right now.....this story has something that can show everyone that they need to move on cause were here for them and always will be. I never had that feeling but i bet it hurts.....god bless everyone and have a good life. If you see someone who needs help plz help them they need it. Ms.Thompson is very sweet to help Teddy through his life and help educate him and go through his life. Bye :) <3 <3 <3
28 Oct, 2014 06:05 PM
They made a video about this, I watched it and I started crying. This is such a good story.
30 Oct, 2014 06:14 PM
\m/ very good story
03 Nov, 2014 05:52 PM
I love this story its so beautiful!! its amazing and inspirational... <3 I love the part when he says "today u smelled like my mom used to." I teared up. <3
11 Nov, 2014 09:35 AM
22 Nov, 2014 08:13 AM
ohh my. gosh.. so sad???dz. storry. it's amazing
04 Jan, 2015 11:42 AM
03 Mar, 2016 06:25 PM
People need to realize that life is hard. Life is complicated. Life is not normal. Life how it is right now is not how it should be
11 Sep, 2016 09:05 PM
02 Jan, 2017 08:29 PM
I cried again