Showing Kindness

Kindness: The language of love

Mean Miss Williams

When I was a thirteen year old student attending James Monroe High School in the Bronx, New York City, I had an English teacher everyone called Mean Miss Williams. In her early fifties and unmarried, Miss Williams treated every student curtly and coldly. She didn't have any friends and my classmates disliked her.

At the time, I was in love. In love with life. And Miss Williams was part of the life I loved so much. So, every time I passed her on my way to class I would smile and say, Good morning (or afternoon), Miss Williams! Glaring, she would sternly scold me, You know perfectly well you are not allowed to speak in the corridor; now be quiet! I would just smile and say, Sorry, Miss Williams!

This went on every day: my warm greeting followed by her cold response. However, within a year, something remarkable occurred. Miss Williams had a change of attitude. Slowly, she became more pleasant to be around. She blossomed, as a flower does when exposed to the sun. Students stopped calling