From the Ashes my Teacher Helped Me

Dear Mr. Dallas,

It has been a really long time since I heard from you. In fact, the last time I heard your voice was when my three friends died in a tragic car accident when I was 19 years old. You called to offer me advice and to help me through, what you knew,  would be one of the hardest times of my life.

You told me about your time in the Peace Corps in Africa when you lost your friend. You told me how you had days you thought you would not be able to live through it. You told me you were there to tell me that you did live through it and that the pain gets bearable. And your words helped me through my darkest days, but you wouldn’t know this because I never heard from you again.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t think about you. In fact, I have worked with some of the people you used to work with when you were at Clear Creek High School.

Back when I was a Golddigger I was a mess as a human being. I struggled with my relationship with my alcoholic mother. I struggled with my relationship with my father who lived in a different state. I struggled with my relationship with myself. I was not a healthy person emotionally.

But you saw something in me that I could not, and did not want to, see. You saw that I was college material. You saw that I could do academics. You saw that I could think deeply and critically about the world.

Had you not put those college applications on my desk with the recommendations already filled out my senior year, I don’t think I would have gone to college. My life is truly better because of you.

…and for that I thank you.

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