Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Graduate -- jcarolek

My niece, not yet 25 years old, has completed her coursework, internships and all else that culminate in her being awarded that degree she has earned.  She is officially, a Doctor of Physical Therapy.  

I will miss the graduation party her parents are throwing for her, but I know all who attend will have a blast.  Friends and family are traveling from near and far to share time, stories and congratulations for the guest of honor.  The party will be next Saturday in Pennsylvania.  Since I will not be there, I think it only appropriate to give my congratulations ahead of time.

To be honest, it is hard for me to even imagine she is nearly 25, much less, completed seven years of post high school education.  In my mind, she is still that adorable little girl with blonde curls.  One of my fondest photos of my brother Ted, who passed away nearly 23 years ago, is of him holding the bundle of joy, his niece Heather.
And the photo of Heather and her cousin Richard, oh, probably two years old or so, walking, buck naked in the backyard, oblivious to the world, the photo that still graces the hallway in my Dad's house, is another favorite.  That absolute innocence of youth that, once lost, can simply never again be regained, is captured in that photo.

Over the years I watched Heather as she grew into the beautiful young woman she is today.  Always industrious, I was not surprised when, once she decided she wanted to work in this field, she stayed the course and reached her goal.  
I had to laugh this afternoon when I read her Facebook entry of yesterday, and I quote,

"At the news of my being single, my grandfather asked me if I have given any consideration to becoming a nun in the catholic church... This is after I've had three coronas by the pool and two glasses of wine with dinner. And then he told me I finally look healthy after getting a mild burn from laying out... Never a dull moment..."

No, Heather may not yet be married, but a nun??? I just don't see THAT!  

Congratulations Heather!  You have made your aunt proud! 

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