Tuesday, May 22, 2012
It is a miracle that I am here.
At the very least, because you, yourself, were improbable according to statistics and circumstance.
Your father, navigated uncertainty and turbulence, coming to America circuitiously from Russia via Egypt.
Your mother - who also managed against the odds to arrive here from the Lithuania - was late in her years when she bore you - even by today's standards.
She was told repeatedly by doctors that she would never have children.
Despite these obstacles, your arrival, defied the odds....and was - in the truest sense - a miracle.
Improbably, but thankfully (for your children), you found my mother.
From which my siblings and I are of further miraculous result.
Any manner of happenstance or wrinkle in events prior, and I would not be writing these words.
If that were all, it might be dismissed as unlikely, though simple fate.
But it is not.
From this miracle came ripples of magic that extended far-and-wide to those you touched.
Your magic is part of me.
It is why I like to cook; why I love mountains, why I enjoy throwing a ball with my kids; why I have patience; why I drag my children on hikes; why I can identify the birds from their songs, and crucial to why I love and feel pride in my children, the way you felt about yours.
Your touch, however, extends well-beyond me.
I see your miracle in my siblings, my own children, and my nieces.
I see the numbers of people you have profoundly touched in your life with your care, attention and smile - extended family, friends, neighbors, colleagues, as well as your students. I do so with both awe and admiration - and I am humbled.
Few have such impact or can visibly attest to such lasting and a meaningful impressions upon others.
And fewer still, do so in as many different ways as you: as partner, leader, teacher, friend, organizer, advisor, sage, confidant, parent, and grandparent.
You are a challenging act to follow, but the path you have made is profoundly good and worth heeding.
I will miss you a lot.