Open Letter To My Son On His Final First Day Of High School
(This story was originally written on August 26th, 2021.)
There's something symbolic about the first day of school.
I still get the butterflies this time of year, even though I'm not the one going back to school.
Can somebody tell me where the last 12 years went?
All I can say, it went by in the blink of an eye. I've watched you grow from the cutest little boy into a handsome young man. Words can't express how proud I am of you. You have always been fearless. I remember your first day of kindergarten like the back of my hand. It seems like yesterday, when I walked you up to the classroom, and I was the one who didn't want to let your hand go. My heart just dropped as I walked away.
I was the one who drove you to school every day until it was time to hand the keys over to you. That was a big deal to me as well. I had to trust, that you were ready to handle that responsibility. That I had prepared you properly.
My wish to you is that you make the most of your senior year.
You've had such a challenging high school life. First, starting a brand new high school as a sophomore at Bismarck High School, and not knowing a soul. Moving away from your childhood friends and starting all over.
Then, what you and your class of 2022 have had to deal with. COVID-19 has been a nightmare for our youth. Isolation, remote learning, sports seasons being canceled, loss of rights of passage, and all the uncertainty this virus has caused you and your class.
Yet, I've barely heard a complaint come from you. In so many ways you have been robbed, but you have chosen to remain positive. I can't tell you how much I admire you for all of that.
So, swing for the fences, and give it your all on and off the ice and in the classroom. Take chances, and don't be afraid to fail. That's how we all learn. Make new friends and take it all in. Have a tremendous senior year, and once again, I hope I've prepared you properly. I know you will make me proud, and how quickly it will go.
I was there on your very first day of school, and I told you, "I sure as hell was going to be there for your "last" first day of school."
You can count on me for the rest of your life, guaranteed.
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