The week I graduated from high school, I wrote a letter to all the teachers and faculty who influenced me the most. I told them all the things I’m terrible at saying in person, all the things on my heart. But there was one person I didn’t write a letter for.
She was like my second Momma. She was one of the best teachers I’ve ever had. She was the greatest mentor and role model I can think of.
And I didn’t write her a letter.
At the time, I didn’t know what to say. And even though I’ve been writing her letters all through high school to thank her for things, I couldn’t write one at the very end. It felt like saying goodbye to someone I hope to know forever. But either way, she should know what I would’ve said.
So here’s my letter:
The purpose of this letter is pretty simple. I want to thank you.
I want to thank you for the very first time I got to know you. You rescued me out of the depths of Geometry homework, but you were also helping me leave Orangewood behind.
Thank you for sticking with me, even though I was the most distracted and unmotivated math student you’ve probably ever had.
Thank you for all your words of wisdom and insight.
Thank you for encouraging me to write. (And for teaching me to handle criticism.)
Thank you for correcting me gently. I was stubborn and sometimes it took a while for me to agree, but you never seemed to mind.
Thank you for all those times you were a shoulder to cry on: when the high school retreat was too much for me, when I was heartbroken and called you late at night after that one awful football game, and when I would come to you in tears because no one asked me to the dance.
Thank you for answering all my questions… over and over and over again.
Thank you for being happy for me when I was successful and rejoicing with me when my heart was full. Thank you for building me up, time and time again.
Thank you for loving me during my senior year when anything “Christianese” made me angry. Thank you for not telling me what to believe or fearing for my future, but simply listening to what I had to say. Thank you for being patient with me as I pushed every limit and questioned every teaching I could think of.
You were the best teacher I’ve ever had, but you were also the most wonderful role model, counselor, and second Momma. This post isn’t enough to thank you for everything you and your family have done for me, but it’s the best I can offer.
I love and miss you so very much.
I hope to see you soon!