Too often we only find out how much we can do when we are faced with adversity.
Steel, after all, is forged in fire.
That thought went through my mind throughout last Wednesday's Soups and Hoops fundraiser at Clay Central-Everly.
It was sad that it took a financial crisis, a district crisis, to bring so many people together.
It took faith being tested to bring back alumni, family and friends.
It took losing friends and coworkers to make us appreciate what was about to slip through the district's fingers.
Out of sadness, pain, fear, came something really, really good.
The people of Greenville, Royal, Moenta, Rossie, Everly and farms and acreages between those points, came together for a night of fun, faith and fundraising. There was laughter and tears, the sweetest mingling imaginable.
About half the debt was wiped out in one night. What an achievement!
Credit for the event goes to so many people who worked together. Trying to mention them all would, no doubt, result in leaving out an important part of the puzzle.
I've got to mention three - Denice Schoelerman - the human Energizer Bunny. I always joke that it's a good thing Denice uses her powers for good, and not evil. She's in four places at once, and she dedicated her life to the fundraiser throughout the month of December. She also managed to create a wonderful Christmas season for husband Jim and their four young children.
Jake and Betsy Schoelerman, CC-E alums, newlyweds, and all-around super young adults, gave so much time and energy to the effort. Organizing the basketball games, gathering and cataloging the silent auction items, coordinating the evening's events. This young couple shows why the future is so bright for the district.
The district's not out of the woods yet. The problems remain. The sad reality of losing so many teachers and other caring professionals will still come to pass. A plan, however, is in place. Decisions have been made. The school is facing the same harsh reality so many small districts in our country's heartland face.
The things that make CC-E special remain. It's a caring community of teachers, professionals and parents who do everything they can to ensure the students succeed.
The test scores prove it. The CC-E students achieve at high levels. They go on to success in college and the professional world.
As one organizer of the fundraiser put it, "If this were a matter of students not doing well, that would be a bigger problem. We can deal with financial issues."
After last week's event, I think folks are convinced the district can deal with this.
I'd be remiss as a mother if I didn't give a shout out today to my favorite CC-E Maverick, son Drew, who celebrates his 17th birthday today. It's a mother's job to embarrass her teenage son and mentioning him in my column does just that.