Headliner, Spring 2021
A colleague recently shared how last spring his mother-in-law found colorful vintage postcards in various second-hand shops and antique stores around her town, and sent them to friends and family across the country. She would mark them sometimes with an “X” and sometimes, if the front of the postcard had a photo or message reminiscent of a novel or movie, she would sign as a character from the story. She even managed to send them with postmarks from towns other than her own; something even now her family doesn’t know how she managed. When received the postcards brought joy and laughter, and a funny bit of confusion when trying to figure out who the sender was. The mystery went to Facebook and friends and family compared notes and photos of their cards, sharing stories and commenting on the wittiness of the messages. They connected.
I write notes as well, finding that the act of putting pen to paper, without the convenience of a delete button or spell check, slows my hand. I look up, I pause, thinking of the right words. I think of how when my note is received, someone will read it and know with certainty that for those moments, they were the only one on my mind. They will know that I am with them.
The last few months have brought this community together in so many ways. We have found strength and comfort in one another. We have cried together, found joy together, and connected in ways we never had considered before: virtual gatherings, reunions, cooking classes, magic shows, birthday parties, game nights, livestreamed weddings and funerals, and concerts. And as our communities began to return to a more normal time and the need for such virtual communications seems to dwindle, I wondered if the seemingly impenetrable cord that connected us this last year would weaken. Yet it hasn’t taken long to realize that isn’t the case. In fact, the strength of our community which sustained us this last year, continues to be that which pushes us forward, keeps us motivated to stay the course, to continue with our diligent care for the community. We are still in this together, we are still with one another, and that has made all the difference.
One of my friends lost her father in the fall, and she told me how the notes she received in the mail from people who live a mile away and from those who lived across the country, touched her soul, and kept her grounded. She carries a couple of them with her every day as a reminder of the love and care people truly have for one another. I do the same, carrying with me those moments that have etched themselves into my heart and will be what I remember when this pandemic has faded from our view, I will carry the sounds of students and faculty greeting one another and checking in on each other, both virtually and while in the hallway together.
I have no doubt that our community will continue to find ways to connect with one another, assuring each other that we are on this journey together and we are never alone.
Head of School