Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Blog Fodder #2

Submitted by Nikki-ann, this week's Blog Fodder topic is going to take a bit of thinking out and writing!

Tell us about somebody who has changed your life, even if just a little bit.

Right ... who to tell about? Who do I consider has changed my life? Family or friend? Both I suppose, in different ways. But I think I'm going to tell you about a friend of mine.

I moved to Kent in late August 1997 to take up a teaching post @ a large local primary school. I moved into a small flat and began my first teaching job with no real idea of the changes that were about to take place in my life! I was one of three new teachers starting that year ... and Ruth was one of the others. Ruth & her daughters had moved to Kent from Glasgow, a huge move, away from family, friends and support.

But actually this huge move was really the second part of a well thought out escape for her and her girls. It had started nearly 5 years earlier when she had made a decision that she wanted to re-train and had applied to the University of Strathclyde to join their teacher training programme. Her already physically abusive ex-husband was vehemently against this idea and his abuse changed and became physical against her girls too.

Knowing she had to protect her daughters, she acted. As she started university in the autumn of 1993, so she moved out of the marital home and into local authority housing. Her ex-husband gave up his job and went on the dole so that he wouldn't have to pay any money to the CSA for his children's upkeep and ignored her and the girls in the street. But she carried on, got her degree and amazingly applied for and got a job at the same school as me in Kent.

I was struck by Ruth @ our first meeting. She was so positive. Even though she had moved hundreds of miles from all her support structures ~ family, friends and loved ones ~ the glass was always half full. She was always laughing. She was a good listener and incredibly kind. Eventhough life was hard .... good god money was tight and we both lived in awful houses, she looked for the little things that made life great and celebrated them .... her wee golden moments.

So there, my best-friend Ruth. She changed my life. Made me look for the positive. Helped me celebrate my glass as half full and never half empty. Taught me to sing out loud and dance as if it was my last day on earth! And I love her for that and so many other reasons!

Life has moved on now. She is still my best-friend. Still laughing. BUT there have been major changes in her life. She is happily married to a guy called Ian, has a third beautiful daughter and now works with me again. At the same school, back together! And the ex-husband ... still an arsehole!


mar said...

I guess we unfortunately need a kind Ruth in our lives to makes us realize how spoiled we are... I am so glad to hear your dear friend has a happy life now, she truly deserves the best. And you as a friend.

Magpie said...

she sounds like an amazing person and friend...i'm glad that she's found her own little bit of happiness...


Cheryl said...

He was scared of her. Does that help? See men like that draw their own self worth from how many people they boss about, so don't you dare do anything intelligent that would make them feel smaller by comparison. As soon as he started complaining, she'd already won. She sounds great!

By the way I ADORE your new banner.

Judy said...

Ruth sounds like a wonderful friend, and a wonderful person. I think you are both very lucky to have each other. I'm glad her life is going well.

Moogie said...

Wow, Ruth is an amazing woman. I've always been inspired by people who come up from the deep, dark hole that life has put them into, and out into the bright sunshine, happy and successful. What a wonderful friend you have. Thank you for sharing her with us.

Anonymous said...

You have gone Green! a good choice of colour if I may say so Mrs

Ruth sounds absolutely fabulous. The thought of you two together at work is somewhat scary too! LOL

Lisa said...

Trust Fizzy to pick up on the wee'd bit...I have to say that did stick in my mind too lol

What a lovely person Ruth sounds like, no wonder the two of you get on so well. A remarkably strong woman who did what was needed. I'm glad she has you in her life and vice versa.

Lovely new header up there Jo, so good to see you both. And thanks, best of the christmas season to you two too!

Claire said...

What a great friend you have gained. A very strong and caring woman by the way you tell her story. Thank you for sharing.

Chrissie said...

I love this post about Ruth and also am really enjoying your whole blog (my first visit here). You write well!

My Blog Fodder #2 is up (I had computer problems last week) and I'm just now getting to surf other #2's.

See you at #3