Retired Teacher Sees Homeless Girl With Baby in Her Arms and Recognizes Her Former A-Student — Story of the Day
A retired teacher walks past a homeless girl with a crying baby in her arms, only to realize that she used to be a former honor student in her class. She decides to find out what happened in hopes of helping the poor girl.
Mrs. Baker was a retired teacher who devoted more than half of her life to teaching mathematics. "Any problem can be solved with the help of mathematics," she used to tell her students.
She loved children, and in return, the children loved her too. As she got older, she realized her brain wasn't as sharp to continue teaching, so she retired at the age of sixty.
Now, only the pink hydrangeas she'd water in her garden were privy to her stories about mathematics. Her children were all grown up, and her grandchildren were too young to be taught. She longed for the day she'd be able to teach her grandkids when they were old enough.
One day, Mrs. Baker made a run to the grocery store. She would usually meet with her neighbors there, and they'd have coffee at a local cafe after running their errands. That particular day, however, was different.
At the store entrance, she noticed a homeless girl who looked to be in her early 20s. Something about the young woman caught her attention.
She decided to hand the woman some dollars as she walked closer, then felt terrible when she saw a crying baby in her arms.
"Thank you," the homeless girl said, looking up at the old lady, and Mrs. Baker turned pale. She realized she knew the girl – she was a former student of hers.
"Sandra Gibson, is that you?" she asked in surprise and the girl's cheeks turned red in embarrassment.
"Yes, it's me," she replied quietly.
Mrs. Baker could not have been more surprised. Sandra Gibson was a straight-A student, arguably at the top of her class. They used to work together after school, as the young girl was gifted in mathematics. Mrs. Baker believed that Sandra would make a great scientist one day.
After an awkward silence, Sandra felt uncomfortable around Mrs. Baker and asked her to leave. "Please, move along. You're preventing me from earning the required amount I need to take home," the young girl muttered.
The old lady was taken aback by what she said. "Required amount?" she thought to herself.
Mrs. Baker moved along, entering the grocery store to run errands. While circling the store, she couldn't get the thought of Sandra out of her head and she decided to buy her some food.
She handed Sandra a sandwich and offered to babysit while she ate. The young girl was hesitant, as that would mean less time for her to beg for money.
"Don't worry," Mrs. Baker assured her. "They'll give money to the old woman with a child, too," she said, getting the baby from Sandra.
Mrs. Baker held the baby and asked passersby for money while Sandra ate beside her. "What happened to you, dear Sandra?" the former teacher asked politely.
Sandra revealed that shortly after graduating high school, her parents died in an accident. With nowhere to go, she relied heavily on her boyfriend and lived with him.
"I got pregnant, and when we had our baby, he just stopped being responsible. He forced me to go out on the streets with the child to earn money, thinking people would feel sorry for us. He's just at the shack, doing nothing. I can't leave him because I have nowhere else to go," Sandra admitted.
Mrs. Baker was shocked and realized Sandra had been forced into a living situation that she did not want. "This is not a healthy environment for you and your child. Please, let me help you," she told her former student.
With tears in her eyes, Sandra realized her teacher was right. There was no hope in getting her boyfriend to change, as he had already proven himself to be a deadbeat father.
With Sandra's consent, Mrs. Baker called the police and Sandra's boyfriend was taken to the police station. Meanwhile, Mrs. Baker adopted Sandra and helped take care of her young child.
Knowing how gifted Sandra was at mathematics, Mrs. Baker pulled strings to get her a scholarship at a nearby college, where she studied Applied Mathematics. Mrs. Baker took care of the baby at home while Sandra studied, and they became a family alongside Mrs. Baker's other kids and grandkids.
After four years, Sandra graduated from college Magna Cum Laude. She was a sought-after recruit by many companies and financial corporations, and it was easy for her to land a high-paying job.
Not only did she start earning good money for herself, but she was able to secure her daughter's future and give back to Mrs. Baker in the process. "You changed my life, Mrs. Baker. I owe it all to you," she said one day after getting her first paycheck.
What can we learn from this story?
- Don't settle for less than you deserve. Sandra stayed with her boyfriend because she thought it was her only option. After crossing paths with Mrs. Baker, she realized she was holding herself back and that there were other ways for her to survive and even thrive.
- It's never too late to pursue your dreams. When Sandra's parents died, she was lost and thought she had no other choice but to rely on her boyfriend. After meeting Mrs. Baker again, she was able to continue with her studies and land a job at a good company where she pursued her talent in mathematics.
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