As part of my #52stories project for 2020, I'm looking at monthly quizzes with prompts from Family Search. The January category is Goals and Achievements. While I won't commit to following the prompts for each story, they do provide a starting place. And this week's memory is about a recognition I received that has always troubled me a bit.
I was in the 3rd or 4th grade. We were making posters for a contest sponsored by a local insurance company. The theme for the contest was encouraging safety on the streets by not jaywalking. We learned about how good posters rely on an image and a few words. My idea was to draw someone on crutches, with a bandaged head and the words, "Yes, I jaywalked."
The idea was all mine. However, when it was time to move the idea from my head to the paper, I realized a major flaw. I couldn't draw, art projects always terrified me, and drawing a person was an impossible challenge. Each time I tried to work on the drawing I would end up in tears. Enter my friend, Elaine, who had mad skills in the drawing department. She helped me sketch out the person on crutches. I outlined and colored the figure, and added the caption to the sketch. Imagine my surprise when our teacher notified me that I had won third prize in the contest. I remember my dad taking me to the bank and helping me open a savings account with the $15 in prize money. This savings account became the repository for my college savings.
More than fifty years later, I sometimes wonder - Should I have split the prize money and recognition with Elaine? Should I have refused the prize since I had help from a friend? I wonder if Elaine remembers helping me. I've never forgotten her help. Maybe it's time for me to send a note and half the prize money to Elaine.