As a teacher, my husband receives all sorts of gifts right before winter break rolls around. From homemade goodies, to gift cards, to festive socks, clothing for our baby-on-the-way, special keepsakes, and more, students are extremely thoughtful in in their holiday gift-giving. Although some gifts are more practical than others (yay gift cards, nay candles) every single teacher present is appreciated. Because it's the thought that counts. And fair warning: The story of this teacher getting Lucky Charms from a student for Christmas will absolutely break you.
As Newsweek reported, Rachel Uretsky-Pratt — an elementary teacher from Kennewick, Washington — has managed to go viral as a result of her recent, eye-opening Facebook post. On Dec. 19, Uretsky-Pratt shared a photo of a small bag of Lucky Charms marshmallows, along with an important message. The elementary teacher explained that it was the last day before winter break, and that the majority of teachers bring in special treats or little books to hand out to students before the two-week hiatus from school. Occasionally, teachers wind up receiving gifts from their students as well. One present in particular stood out to Uretsky-Pratt this year, and she felt compelled to share her story.
"Today I received some chocolates, sweet handmade notes, some jewelry, but these Lucky Charm marshmallows stood out to me the most," she wrote. "You see, 100% of my school is on free/reduced lunch. They also get free breakfast at school every day of the school week. This kiddo wanted to get my something so badly, but had nothing to give." What happened was this: The student took the time to hand-pick every marshmallow out from her free breakfast cereal she had received at school that morning — and then placed them into the packaging of her spork, straw, and napkin to give to her teacher. Uretsky-Pratt ended her post with this heartwarming lesson:
Be grateful for what you have, and what others give you. It all truly comes from the deepest parts of their hearts. Happy Holidays. 💕
It's pretty clear Uretsky-Pratt's message has hit a nerve; her post has been shared more than 106,000 times so far. One Facebook user commented, "That shoots an arrow through one’s heart ❤️. The sweet and earnest efforts of children to give to a special teacher a gift 💝 so meaningful to them. Wow 😊."
Another person wrote, "Tears... That hits you right in the feels."
Yet another Facebook user commented, "This has me tearing up. Despite my growing ever cynical with age, I can always be reminded that even the smallest forms of kindness can renew my own faith in people and our potential for doing good."
As the elementary teacher told USA Today, she accepted her student's marshmallows in the same way she did all of the other gifts — by saying, "Thank you so much, sweetie." Uretsky-Pratt also acknowledged the student's sacrifice, telling the publication, “No one likes Lucky Charms without the marshmallows." (Amen!) In an interview with The Washington Post, the 24-year-old teacher — who is in her second year of teaching — added, “All my kiddos are super sweet and giving. Kids are naturally kind and loving. The world kind of hardens us sometimes.”
I don't know about you, but this story certainly puts the "reason for the season" sharply into focus. This child, who literally had nothing to give, still found a way to show her teacher how much she cares. And she did so while sacrificing the only good part of Lucky Charms cereal. Which — and this might just be the pregnancy hormones talking, here — actually brings a tear to me eye. Thanks so much for sharing your story with us!
After a very frustrating first birth experience, this Deaf mother wanted a change. Will the help of two Deaf doulas give the quality communication and birth experience this mom wants and deserves? Watch Episode Four of Romper's Doula Diaries, Season Two, below, and visit Bustle Digital Group's YouTube page for more episodes.