“Know you what it is to be a child…It is to believe in love, to believe in loveliness, to believe in belief; it is to be so little that the elves can reach to whisper in your ear, it is to turn pumpkins into coaches, and mice into horses, lowness into loftiness, and nothing into everything, for each child has its fairy godmother in its soul.” As I turn to look at the child so hopefully tugging at my sleeve, I see her. I truly see her and all magical ideas behind those beautiful soulful eyes.
Changing the lens through which we see our children, our charges, our sacred beings requires taking off our teacher glasses of overwhelm to switch on our God Goggles. The miracle of God Goggles reveals the beauty and sacredness of our children from the Creator’s perspective.
All teachers receive the gift of God Goggles the moment we realize that teaching is our calling. Yours are in your pocket right now! And all you need is a little magic to get them turned on. . .the magic of sight.
Years ago when I was juggling a challenging classroom and a particular young student, I was given my first set of God Goggles. I had no idea they even existed or even how to turn them on, but one of my students showed me.
Chayne, a blond-haired, blue-eyed autistic beauty, spoke slowly, deliberately. With every word chosen so slowly and precisely, it would put an impatient teacher on edge. She was extremely patient with me, however. Throughout the year I was blessed to have her in my classroom, her continued presence, ability to see the world through fairness and equality, and kindness to others turned on my God Goggles.
And slowly I began to see other children the way I saw Chayne, as God would see them: perfect, magical, whole. No matter their background or ability or behavior, I see them, truly see them.
Miracles followed when I slipped those Goggles on. Children worked harder, and I smiled and laughed more.
Believe me I had—and still have– my moments, but those Goggles dangle around my neck, permanently tethered.
This year I have Ayla to help me with my God Goggles. Any time I need to jiggle the “on” switch, I look at Ayla with her own version of awesomeness. . .her drawing of a unicorn in her journal or the big pink bow that doesn’t match anything but her attitude. After that, those God Goggles are set for the day.
Last year, as I sat at the teacher table, I watched one of my rowdies work. His face, illuminated by the lamp, reminded me of his sweetness and inner beauty. I was inspired that day to have my students create a Top 5 things they wanted adults to know about them.
One of the themes in that Top 5 list was to be patient. Kids can’t remember everything they hear (and certainly not the first time) nor can they work as fast as we adults do. Putting on our God Goggles helps us remember that.
Children are magical creatures (“fresh from God” as Charles Dickens observed) with their ability to turn the mundane pumpkin of the everyday into a shining carriage, with only their imagination. You can see this magic in their drawings, their stories, and their eyes.
Even better, you can see the spark of their soul behind those eyes. Through their eyes, you can connect back, past their abilities and their behavior, to their true nature: imaginative creatures with full hearts.
We all have our Chaynes or Aylas. They’re our sacred beings sent to remind of us of our true nature. We may not be as fresh from God, but we’re one step closer by serving those that are. We are sacred beings—blessed to be loved by children.