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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-16-2008, 08:12 PM Thread Starter
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Feel Good Story

I got this as an email to forward on but really liked the story and though I would share it.

At the prodding of my friends I am writing this story. My name is Mildred Honor and I am a

former elementary school music teacher from Des Moines, Iowa. I have always supplemented my

income by teaching piano lessons - something I have done for over 30 years. During

those years I found that children have many levels of musical ability, and even though I have never had

the pleasure of having a prodigy, I have taught some very talented students. However, I have also had

my share of what I call "musically challenged" pupils - one such pupil being Robby.

Robby was 11 years old when his mother (a single mom) dropped him off for his first piano lesson. I

prefer that students (especially boys) begin at an earlier age, which I explained to Robby. But Robby

said that it had always been his mother's dream to hear him play the piano, so I took

him as a student.

Well, Robby began his piano lessons and from the beginning I thought it was a hopeless endeavour. As

much as Robby tried, he lacked the sense of tone and basic rhythm needed to excel. But he dutifully

reviewed his scales and some elementary piano pieces that I require all my students tolearn.

Over the months he tried and tried while I listened and cringed and tried to encourage him. At the end of

each weekly lesson he would always say "My mom's going to hear me play someday". But to me, it

seemed hopeless, he just did not have any inborn ability. I only knew his mother from a distance as she

dropped Robby off or waited in her aged car to pick him up. She always waved and smiled, but never

dropped in

Then one day Robby stopped coming for his lessons. I thought about calling him, but assumed that

because of his lack of ability he had decided to pursue something else. I was also glad

that he had stopped coming - he was a bad advertisement for my teaching!

Several weeks later I mailed a flyer on the upcoming recital to the students' homes. To my surprise,

Robby (who had received a flyer) asked me if he could be in the recital. I told him that the recital was for

current pupils and that because he had dropped out, he really did not qualify. He told me that

his mother had been sick and unable to take him to his piano lessons, but that he had been practicing.

"Please Miss Honor, I've just got to play" he insisted. I don't know what led me to allow him to play in the

recital - perhaps it was his insistence or maybe something inside of me saying that it would be all right.

The night of the recital came and the high school gymnasium was packed with parents, relatives and

friends. I put Robby last in the program, just before I was to come up and thank all the students and play

a finishing piece. I thought that any damage he might do would come at the end of the program and I

could always salvage his poor performance through my "curtain closer".

Well, the recital went off without a hitch, the students had been practicing and it showed. Then Robby

came up on the stage. His clothes were wrinkled and his hair looked as though he had run an eggbeater
through it.. "Why wasn't he dressed up like the other students?" I thought. "Why didn't his mother at least

make him comb his hair for this special night?"

Robby pulled out the piano bench, and I was surprised when he announced that he had chosen to play
Mozart's Concerto No. 21 in CO Major. I was not prepared for what I heard next. His fingers were light

on the keys, they even danced nimbly on the ivories. He went from pianissimo to fortissimo, from allegro
to virtuoso; his suspended chords that Mozart demands were magnificent! Never had I heard Mozart

played so well by anyone his age. After six and a half minutes he ended in a grand crescendo, and

everyone was on their feet in wild applause!

Overcome and in tears, I ran up on stage and put my arms around Robby in joy. "I have never heard you play like that Robby, how did you do it?"

Through the microphone Robby explained: "Well, Miss Honor .... remember I told you that my mom was

sick? Well, she actually had cancer and passed away this morning. And well .... she was born deaf, so

tonight was the first time she had ever heard me play, and I wanted to make it special."

There wasn't a dry eye in the house that evening. As the people from Social Services led Robby from

the stage to be placed into foster care, I noticed that even their eyes were red and puffy. I thought to

myself then how much richer my life had been for taking Robby as my pupil.

No, I have never had a prodigy, but that night I became a prodigy .... of Robby. He was the teacher and I

was the pupil, for he had taught me the meaning of perseverance and love and believing in yourself, and
maybe even taking a chance on someone and you didn't know why.

Robby was killed years later in the senseless bombing of the Alfred P. Murray Federal Building
in Oklahoma City in April, 1995. And now, a footnote to the story.

If you are thinking about forwarding this message, you are probably wondering which people on your

address list aren't the "appropriate" ones to receive this type of message. The person who sent this to

you believes that we can all make a difference! So many seemingly trivial interactions between two

people present us with a choice - Do we act with compassion or do we pass up that opportunity and

leave the world a bit colder in the process?


Mom to:
Rocky - 3 year old Black GSD
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-16-2008, 08:25 PM
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Re: Feel Good Story

Thank you for leaving this world a bit warmer today.

~ Kathy ~

Kai vom Theishof ~ GSD
Maggie ~ Pug
Natasha ~ Queen Kitty
Midnight ~ Boss Kitty
Lennie ~ "Special" Kitty
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-06-2009, 01:44 PM
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-06-2009, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Feel Good Story

Wasnt posting on if the story was on snopes or not. IMO the story just gives the warm fuzzy feeling.


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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-06-2009, 08:18 PM
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Re: Feel Good Story

It would do that if it weren't purportedly true. What bothers me about it is the link to the Oklahoma City bombing. The victims of that bombing don't need to be "ennobled" by this kind of story. To my mind, it is disrespectful to their memory to do that.


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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-06-2009, 09:06 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Feel Good Story

Again I did not mean disrepect to anyone, I liked the story and figured that there would be others that did also. That is it, nothing more, nothing less.


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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-11-2009, 11:36 PM
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Re: Feel Good Story

I enjoyed the story, makes you stop and think. Thanks for posting.

Larka GSD 1/4/06 Palla GSD 7/16/06 Loki adopted 8/23/08
Badger,Miss Crabtree & Shafford, the kitty krew
Waiting at the bridge;Palla,Tucker,Chance, Brandy and Lacy. I'll miss you to the end of eternity, and love you twice as long.
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