Anniversary and Flu

Hey Coffee Sippers. Today is going to be a relatively short post. My household has the flu, so we are sleeping more. And I’m being “bullied” into drinking more fluids by all of the people who care about me (Oh, you say they’re doing the right thing? Yeah? Well, tell them to knock it off. I just want to sleep, watch Facebook videos about animal rescues, and be a pampered little honey bun…). Y’all, I’m not a good sick person. This is a well-known fact. Rachel and I were texting earlier when the other human in my house was diagnosed. She asked if I got the flu shot (I did, so hopefully I’ll have it easier than he does).

This was her first response when I said yes: “Okay, just making sure. Cause you’ll go down hard with the flu.”

Rachel won’t see this post until tomorrow morning. Why? Because my gorgeous best friend and endlessly awesome partner is out tonight celebrating her first wedding anniversary! Guys, as of tomorrow, this beauty has been married to her high school sweetheart for a whole freaking year!! I tell you this because I need all of you to join me in telling these two happy anniversary! (If we are really lucky, Rach will even share a wedding photo with us… no pressure.)

*cue girlishly high pitched screeches of happiness* I cannot stand it. They are too cute, and I am too excited for them. True love isn’t easy, but here at Lipstick Stains and Coffee, we don’t care about easy. We care about what’s worth it. And let me tell you, these two definitely are, and I am so grateful to have gotten to see them figure that out.

Today, I decided to share a poem with you. As you all know, I’m a teacher. Even the inspiration from this blog came to me in my most natural habitat: my classroom. This poem came from that same space, because yet again a student came to me about issues at home. I will not go into detail with you on these things, ever. Those stories are not mine to tell and our first priority here is respect. However, I can tell you that sometimes it is so hard to stay neutral and encouraging. And after two IEP meetings, multiple student conversations, and everything else this week… I had to vent. That’s where this poem originated.

A Teacher’s Heart

I will never understand you.
Nor how you can so commonly and consistently
Invalidate, intimidate, and destroy.
Crushing young men and women
Before they even get old enough to be such.
You are their parent, for the love of God!
You are supposed to protect and love them.
So why is that so hard for you?

Yet no matter how disgusting I find you,
I won’t blame it all on you alone.
Not when society helps you every single day
By validating hate and vitriol.
Take care not to ignore those of us here in the trenches,
For we are still fighting.
Fighting to save the same child you just reprimanded
for writing, for singing, for eating.
Hell, if you could reprimand for breathing…
I think you just might.

Just remember that we know.
We see the pain you inflict.
And we see the young men and women:
The ones you’re destroying your relationship with
While we fight so damn hard to build one.
I guess that’s the difference between you and us:
We value the humanity inside them enough to want that.

Just remember that we know.
We see the pain you inflict.
And we see the young men and women:
The ones you’re destroying your relationship with
While we fight so damn hard to build one.
I guess that’s the difference between you and us:
We value the humanity inside them enough to want that.

For once stop focusing on yourself
Or how this child might impact your image.
They do not, and have never, existed to validate you
But you have only ever existed to validate them.

That’s why you get to be the parent.
And I’m stuck here with a teacher’s heart.

This poem came from a place of frustrated understanding. So many of my students are going through things at home or within themselves. Being a teenager is hard. Yet sometimes, I can’t help thinking that teens are also hard to be around. Between hormones and peer-to-peer drama, we teachers can never get a firm handle on what is walking into our classroom. Today alone, two different class periods were entirely rewired, reconstructed, and will have to be redone because of high emotions and higher tempers… BETWEEN my meetings. That’s okay though. We roll with it, and I make sure to never hold anything against my students. We all go through difficult emotions, and teenagers are trying to get to know themselves; often, for the very first time.

To all of my fellow teachers out there, I just want to say thank you. Thank you to the teachers who encouraged and supported us while we were growing up. Thank you to each and every one of you for your sacrifice and bravery walking into those classrooms to be a point of stability and love in the lives of these young men and women. When I was working on my first Master’s degree, we learned the phrase “In loco parentis.” It is a Latin phrase that translates to “in the place of a parent.” Sometimes, you, as a teacher, are the only real source of stability and support a child may have. Parents can’t always be there, and some parents aren’t able to connect with their children the ways I’m sure they want to. Thank you, teachers, for being there. For giving these young men and women a safe place.

You are so appreciated. You touch lives in ways that carry impact for years to come.


On my lips: sass, because I’m sick and makeup isn’t happening.

In my cup: water, because I’m being forced to drink more non-coffee fluids.

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Welcome to Lipstick Stains and Coffee, our experiment in beating Murphy's Law. I'm Kristen, the founder of this blog. Today, I run the blog with my best friend, Rachel. However, it didn't start out that way. In fact, I founded this blog over a year before we started frequently posting. It sat dormant for a year, between my fear of going public and my uncertainty of where to go with it. Flash forward to March 2019, when I opened up to my best friend about this secret little oasis I'd carved out but never used. Immediately she jumped on board, we brainstormed a plan, and we got started. Finally, Lipstick Stains and Coffee is a little oasis not only for us, but hopefully for all of our readers. Enjoy that cup of coffee, lovely. You deserve it.

One thought on “Anniversary and Flu”

  1. Congratulations Rachel on your anniversary! I hope you and your husband had a wonderful time.

    I very much like both of your poems today, they both overflow from the heart.

    Kristen, don’t become tired or jaded. Your efforts are not in vane, you may never see the fruits of your labor but I can assure you that you plant seeds of hope and humility in their hearts. You water them every day, and they will grow.

    And the same to all the teachers that sacrifice so much trying to make a difference, thank you. Your work is appreciated.


    Liked by 2 people

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