What to do with CCCCCrap when you’re mostly used to AAAAAwesome

I’m not fond of the letter C. It lends visions of cockroaches, calluses, cannibals, cleaning, and CRAP! BUT THE LETTER A!! Now that’s a different story … amazing, Antigua-beachside, animals, almonds-chocolate-covered ones, and AWESOME! There is another thing, though. I’m a student. And that is mostly why I have such a strong affinity for A’s. Also why I’m finding myself in such a confusing conundrum on this otherwise ordinary day.

Here’s the truth. I just checked for a grade I’ve been waiting on, and it was finally posted.

igot65. thatisaC. igotConapaper.

Papers are my gimme grades. meaning they’re easy to me and I don’t get C’s! ESPECIALLY on papers. I’m a senior, and I’ve NEVER gotten a C on a paper. Ever. onlythisonce.

Lest you think I’m boasting, let me explain. I’m the middle child of 7 children, 4 girls and 3 boys. When we were born, our parents lined up the girls and said, Beauty#1, Beauty#2, Beauty#3, then they stopped at me. Hmmmmm. Brain! Yes, she’ll make a good brain. And they bought me books. many books. One day my Dad brought home the entire boxed set of Encyclopedia Brittanica and I read it every word from A-ak to Zywiec. Me and George Bernard Shaw. just sayin’. They entered my sisters in beauty contests and signed me up for Spelling Bees. So you see when I get A’s, I’m just doing my job, like I was trained to do.

I decided to email the teacher. There had to be a mistake. And it couldn’t be mine because I have never gotten a C. onlythisonce.

Dear Susan,

There must be a mistake with the C I received on my paper. Certainly, if you had explained the subject matter properly , I wouldn’t have been so confused; in fact, soconfusedIgotaC. You should know that in my entire educational career, AND I AM A SENIOR STUDENT, I have never received a C. onlythisonce. Please reconsider.



I was starting to feel not so good about myself. And it had nothing to do with the C grade. I could hear Drew now …. leprechaun versions of my kids sit on my eardrum and torment me all day long calling out my crapKimmmmmm, give your head a shake! The truth was when I should have been writing my paper, I was in Newfoundland, eating Jiggs Dinner, singing I’s the B’y with the locals, getting soaked in the rain and loving every minute! I flew home the day before said assignment was due and pounded out an essay dotted with special words like conversely, simultaneously, conjointly, consequently, presuppose, predicate, and unequivocal. Pretty impressive, really. Except if the teacher wants to know about apples, and you write about oranges you can be unequivocally assured that a C grade is probably a pretty Awesome one!

When I’m still not absolutely certain if I’m making a good decision, I pull out my meter stick. Mine isn’t marked by inches and centimetres, but years.

Will this grade matter in 5 years?  Unequivocally NO.

I wrote my teacher an email. One that I sent.

Dear Susan,

Thanks for the input regarding the very poor grade I received on my paper. You were right; I was a little lost. I was away and missed lecture the week before the assignment was due so I didn’t have many instructions. I just wasn’t sure what you wanted, especially without having heard you discuss it; I should have emailed you for help. I will be sure to understand the next assignment more clearly in order to compensate for this grade. Enjoy your day!

Here’s her response:

Hi Kimberly,
I really appreciate your very mature response…and by that I mean taking ownership of your learning. I am sorry there was confusion and I want to stress that I am here to support you. Let’s make sure you are on track for the next one which we will begin to talk about after the mid term and reading break. If you want details earlier, I can provide.
All the best,

You guys, owning my crap felt so awesome! And liberating.

I still like A’s, but I’d rather be an A+ person than an A+ student.


Chocolate, Christmas, candy, Colin Farrell, corn on the cob, cake … C is looking mighty fine!

ps. That trip to Newfoundland. Sooooo worth the C!

Am I the only one full of crap and missing the awesome in my mistakes? Tell me your stories please so I don’t feel so unequivocally alone!



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