Tag Archive | learning to like black jelly beans

Giving Thanks

Sister Mary Micheline held up the classroom reward jar. I had finally earned a piece of candy. I slid out of my desk and slowly walked to the front of the room. Other second grade students in my class had frequently earned rewards from this jar since school had started this fall. The candy in the jar wasn’t just picked over, it was down to the last treat; one black licorice jelly bean…no one’s favorite candy.

Sister unscrewed the lid and held the jar out for me to reach in. I heard someone in the room snicker. Sister’s face was a map of winkles snuggly wrapper with a white wimple. A large black veil flowed from top of her head and down over her shoulders and back. Grasping the jelly bean, I pulled my arm out of the jar and looked up into the pale blue eyes of my elderly nun. I dutifully recited slowly, “Thank-you Sister Mary Micheline.”

Back at my desk, I looked down at the prize in the palm of my hand and for a second it blurred. In September and October, the jar held many desirable candies. Blinking, I thought, “Daddy loves licorice jelly beans.” Suddenly I felt so much better, I popped the black bean into my mouth. The sweet licorice taste made me feel as if my adored Daddy was sitting right next to me.

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