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Kelsie Teague: Racing Through Life

Ms. Kelsie Teague climbs out the window of her car after a race.

Courtesy Photo

Ms. Kelsie Teague climbs out the window of her car after a race.

Smells of petroleum, smoke and dirt invade Ms. Kelsie Teague’s senses, increasing her nervousness and grounding her soul. With timidity, she places one foot in front of the other as she gets ready to step into her race car. At the time, she didn’t know she would become a teacher by day and racer by night.

“The smell is my favorite thing. It’s gasoline mixed with dirt mixed with rubber,” Ms. Teague said. “It’s really hard, but when you get there there’s this instant feeling. I wish they would make a candle like that.”

Born in Abilene, Texas, Ms. Teague admired her uncle, another racer. In his eyes, she found a refuge of hope and adventure; allowing her to reach for the skies in a way that society considers unrealistic. For Ms. Teague, speaking about her first race brings back fond memories.

“I raced a powderpuff race (all girls) when I was 16,” Ms. Teague said. “It was my first race, in my dad’s car. I was so nervous.”

Butterflies started to slowly flutter in her stomach. Hopes of precision and exactness for her upcoming race interfered with her current confusion. Suddenly, uncertainty enveloped her mind. Teague stood at nearly a foot shorter than her father, and the pillows they had shoved into the car to help barely allowed her to reach the gas, let alone the break.

“My dad’s answer was ‘its ok, you don’t need the break anyway.” Well turns out I did need the break because the steering wheel came off going into turn 3, but I got it back on before I crashed,” Ms. Teague said.”Needless to say, when I got back to my dad, I was a nervous wreck.”

Ms. Teague misses those gaseous smells and dirt stains on her clothes, but everyone must face the world one day – and the imposing reality that causes people to think about survival, finances and careers. She always saw herself working for NASCAR as an engineer, but life swept her toward her Plan B: teaching.

“I actually moved to North Carolina at 18 to pursue a career in NASCAR at NASCAR Tech. I quit after 2 and [a] half weeks,” Ms. Teague said. “I wanted to help kids know that math is not as scary as people make it seem. It can help and change lives.”

For some teachers, the boring white walls, stained carpets and cluttered desks bring about inspiration. Ms. Teague doesn’t want to be one of those teachers. Students may think that educators don’t have anything going on for them outside of school, but Ms. Teague breaks down those preconceptions.

“I watch dancing with [the] stars religiously. I love watching them dance,” Ms. Teague said. “ I wanted a hobby for myself since I work so much and I wanted to learn how to dance, other than Texas two-step and meet new people.”

Connecting with strangers that turn into friends, dancing the night away like no one’s watching and living. Just living. Those moments of release. Falling and getting back up regardless of the acquired wounds. Living and learning go hand in hand.

“I would love to travel anywhere and everywhere,” Ms. Teague said. “If there was a show called dancing with regular people, I would love to do that.”

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About the Writer
Micaih Thomas, Entertainment Editor

Micaih is a student at Legacy High School who has a heart for Jesus, people, and waffles. He hopes that one day people will see the greatness in themselves and witness the greatness from the heavenly places they derive from.

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