She Who Was Not There

By a complication of her incredibly busy life, Nora was not able to make it to the awarding of her freshman year academic letter, which she had earned by virtue of her being smart and working hard in school and all.

It was a tricky parental moment. We really wanted her to go, so we could bust with pride while she walked across the gym floor. Lissa really wanted it. But Nora’s on the stage crew for their performance of Othello, and tonight was the final dress rehearsal. That was for her a no-brainer – of course she would go to the theater. So Lissa and I went and sat in the audience while Nora did not walk up to accept her academic letter. We were still busting proud, and got to applaud a bunch of her friends. And afterwards we went up and grabbed her letter for her and it was all fine.

The seniors who had earned an academic letter all four years got to pick their most influential teacher. They each gave a little speech explaining their choice, and they had little gifts and flowers for the teachers, and it was about the sweetest thing I’ve ever seen.