If you read my post from yesterday you will understand that I have an "abnormal amount" (to quote a portion of my son's Salutatorian Address) of respect for my responsibilities. With that being said, it is now my time to thank some very important people.
Let's start with his grandparent. His paternal grandfather (Granddad - WMB) always wanted to see Timothy's report card. In the beginning he would pay Timothy for each A. After a while it became too expensive, but he was involved and supportive. His paternal grandmother (Grandma - LBB) sadly passed away the week before Timothy entered kindergarten. However, knowing the importance of a good education, we all know she was watching him always from above. Moving to his maternal grandparents (MorMor - MHM and PaPa - LJM), who had the wonderful opportunity to see Timothy on a daily basis through his elementary years when they would pick him up after school and then in high school when they would take him to breakfast at least three days a week and then on to school. All of his grandparents encouraged Timothy to strive for excellence in education, it was not an option, but an expectation.Thank you.
Now moving to the next ring of the family. His aunts, uncles and cousin, although not seen on a regular basis, were always supportive. Honoring him at graduation through their attendance at the ceremony were his Uncle Bill & Aunt Cindy, Uncle Rudy & Aunt Lindie, Aunt Krystal, Aunt Jenny, and his cousins Ashley, Charlotte, & Lacey. Attending via the live streaming feed, Uncle Gene & Aunt Iris, Uncle Tim and cousin Judy. Through telephone conversations, Facebook comments, and cards all of these family members have had faith in his abilities and cheered him on.Thank you.
It is heartwarming to have friends who care about your child, especially their education. I am going to begin with our best friends.
I have already mentioned Uncle Tim, but he deserves to be mentioned again. He has been my husband's best friend for 36 years. He is Timothy's uncle in name, but more importantly in love. He is his godfather and Timothy his namesake. Thank you.
My best friend, Lori, and her family have provided a great deal of comic relief ~ especially in the early years when our kids were little, but also a sounding board since they got to experience each milestone a year in advance since their eldest graduated last year. Thank you.
Our church friends were a constant show of love and support for Timothy from the very beginning of our membership in fall of 1997. Countless hugs, prayers, written & spoken words of encouragement proved to be sent or given at just the right time and always with the most sincerity.Thank you.
To Timothy's school friends, I would like to thank you for your patience with my son. He was not the typical high school student. He has some quirks. He is highly opinionated. He is a geek. However, those of you who have dealt with him through the years continue to love him. The praise showered on him will forever be in my heart. To all members (coaches and students) of the distinguished NHS Academic Decathlon team, thank you! You provided Timothy with he highest level of intellectual debates, studies, and competition, allowing him to be an accomplished member of an elite team. Thank you.
Last, but by no means least, to "our" Rebecca. Words cannot truly express my love for you. You have shown a love for my son I never dreamed he would find in high school. I can tell, by the way you look at him, the love you have in your heart. Until you are a mother, I don't believe you will understand how much it means to me to have someone love my son as much as you seem to love Timothy. It makes my heart sing to see the two of you together and to hear your conversations. You are intellectual equals and don't ever let anyone tell you differently. I am grateful for your patience with my son. Trust me, I know he is not the easiest person to be around. He tends to want to express his opinions, every once in awhile! So Rebecca to you, I say thank you.
My husband and I are both products of Irving ISD. A lot of things in Irving have changed a great deal since we were children, however the dedication of the faculty and staff members of the Irving Independent School District to the students of Irving has never wavered. It was very apparent by the countless number of congratulatory greetings, cards, and comments over the years, especially the past few weeks. These teachers, administrators, and support staff care about their students and want only the very best for them. Thankfully the Internet has allowed us to re-connect with former teachers, whether it be through Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter, being able to convey our appreciation for their dedication is very important. As an educator myself I know the sacrifices that are made for "our kids" [for clarification, this means our students, once they are enrolled they become a part of us]. I would like to especially thank the faculty & staff members of the following schools: Townley Elementary (especially to Ms. Richardson, Ms. Bennett, Ms. Terrill, and Ms. French), Lee Britain Elementary (especially to Ms. Moss and Ms. Palisi), Lamar Middle School (especially to Ms. Weinstein, Ms. Guerin, Mr. Gelber, Ms. Moro, and Ms. Malone), and Nimitz High School (especially to "Mama" Cowen, "Coach" Christenberry, Mr. Greg Jackson, Langsather, Ms. Galemore, Ms. Sargent, Ms.Pachnick, Mr. Thomson, Mr. Sitton, Ms. Thoppil, Ms. Bradley [Happy Birthday!], Ms. Roper, Mr. G., Mr. Nolly, and Mr. Cobb) . District Administrators (especially Ms. George and Ms. Zeske) and School Board Members (current and former) also deserve our gratitude for their desire to help create the best educational environment for all students. As a parent of a new high school graduate, it is my duty to thank you for 12 wonderful years, amazing faculty & staff, a wealth of knowledge & your dedication to the students of Irving ISD. Thank you.
Last, but not least.
In closing, I have to give thanks to my wonderful husband for his love of our son. It is difficult sometimes for a father to show his love for his son, especially when he is a teenager (and knows everything!). Thank you for your devotion and for always advocating for our son. Your expectations were consistently in direct correlation with mine. We set a high bar of expectations and Timothy always aspired for the highest possible level of success, without our pushing. We are an amazing team, and I do believe we did a great job ~ together. Thank you.
In closing I must say a lot of thank yous were expressed, but it is important to thank those who have helped to create an environment of success. Whether through the smallest gesture of support to the highest recognition for a student, each and every person who has come into my son's life has made a mark of impression (difficult times / people created just as much of an impact and have made us realize how God directs us onto the path He wants us to take ~ even if it forces us into our discomfort). A person can never express their appreciate too much, therefore all of the thank yous. Please understand, each and everyone of these thank yous is heartfelt and sincerely. To paraphrase one of our favorite songs, I know he has been changed for the better, because he knew you.