Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Letter to Sunset Students

Before I go any further in this. Before I say one word about where I am going or what I hope to happen to myself and family over the next few years, and before any of the stories start popping off the page like you know they will. I must extend to my students at Sunset High School my absolute gratitude and joy to you for allowing me to wedge and conspire and sneak into your lives. Over the past four and a half years you have kept me sane and alive. I have never laughed harder, thought deeper, tried harder, or been more warmly welcomed than by you all. I have told you many times that the classroom is a magical place that is rarely like the real world. In a classroom everything is symbolic. Every gesture and opinion matters. Every student is important and their voice is vital. We can discuss culture and politics and art and every utterance is relevant and full of truth because for that brief time together we have all bought into that possibility. In the real world people are more than likely crushed, their dreams fade and their voices are lost, but not in the classroom. Not in our classroom! You made me believe in that everyday. For this, I thank you and cherish you. I will miss you more than you ever thought possible. Please know that it is because of you that I have chosen now to ammend my statement. That I now hope to raise my daughters with this idea of a classroom abroad, that perhaps we can find the same beauty and goodness and thoughtful people in all the corners of the globe exactly like the ones that affected me so deeply at Sunset. This new dream is because of you. And so as I leave you, I owe you so much. Thank you, friends, thank you for helping me to change my life and my perspective and I promise to pass that influence on to others.