Dear LaGrange College Promotion & Tenure Committee:

I just read Danielle’s facebook status about missing people. And I totally relate.

I’m currently writing a letter of recommendation for one of my undergrad professors. She’s up for full professor. And asked a few people to write letters. (Sidebar: She needs it by next Wednesday—and asked me in July. Glad I’m on top of things.) So, here I am, typing away about my experience at LaGrange College and stating my reasons as to why this professor should be “promoted” (I guess that’s the right word for it?). It’s bringing back a flood of memories. Good memories and hard memories alike. Like the many long afternoons nights I spent outside with friends–lying in the grass and soaking up the beauty that was the hlll, the sky, and being present with each other. The [seemingly] long walks from the apartments to classes every morning – particularly my junior year when I had almost every class with one of my roommates. We’d generally jammed to VH1 before leaving the apartment (we were SO cool) and were able to enjoy that [seemingly] long walk. Sometimes we talked. Sometimes we didn’t (8am classes). The trees right at the stairs from the residential quad to the parking lot behind Henry. Oh, those trees. At the right time of year they bloomed–and they bloomed–and they bloomed. I walked under them every day my senior year (unless it was raining–then I followed the sidewalk–because residential quad=mud pit when wet). By myself–with the exception of the mornings I had breakfast with two wonderful friends. Those days we got to enjoy the walk together! Lunch in the caf–we milked lunch for all it was worth. Some days, depending on the semester, we spent hours in the caf at lunch. It was a time to see everyone. A time to catch up. A time when, yes, I generally ate a salad with BEETS. Heaven forbid. The noise, the chatter of the caf–it is all music to my soul these days.  Dinner in the caf–generally again with friends, sisters, or the tennis team. Running between apartments and showing up at doors inside of a suitcase. Noticing a latched door and walking in to find out how peoples’ days went. Locking myself out MANY times because of those darn door latches.  Frustration when the washers were full. Frustration when people didn’t take their clothes out of the dryer. Walks from the apartments past Dodd and under the bridge on breezy fall days. Walks through Hills & Dales. Walks with sisters and friends.  Walks down Country Club and back. Throwing leaves. Admiring the perfectly placed flowers in the yards. Man, LaGrange is a beautiful place. My friends. My sisters. My teammates. My professors. Bible study. Late night chats. Dumb reality shows.  The people who walked alongside of me throughout 4 poignant years. People who have made and continue to make a difference in my life. People who encouraged me, supported me, laughed at me when I randomly stood on a chair in the caf (MD loved that), people who held and still hold me accountable. People. Man, LaGrange was full of good, southern people. That stuff isn’t really relevant to a letter of recommendation for a professor, so I’m also reminded of the assignments. Tests. Papers. Research projects. Papers. Lab studies. Papers. Research articles. Papers. I’m reminded of the stress i often felt, the overwhelming feeling that I wasn’t going to get everything done. Staying up late. Getting up early. I’m reminded of the classes I took. The rooms I sat in. The chairs I sat in. Who I sat by. How each class felt. Classes that were intriguing. Classes that were boring. Test review sign-ups (dun dun dun). Cheery department secretaries. Professors with willing hearts and open door policies. Learning. In the classroom. In my apartment. In the caf. On the patio. In the sorority meeting. On the tennis court. On the tennis bus. Dang, I’m flooded with memories. Of 4 years that truly shaped my life. Of 4 years that seem so long ago, yet so close to my heart. So, I yearn for those moments. Those moments with friends. Those ah-ha moments in classrooms. The challenging times with friends, in meetings, or on the tennis courts. It’s not that I want to re-live those moments or wish I was there instead of where I am now. It’s not that at all. I want them to stay real, to stay relevant. I want those memories to continue to flood my mind–as constant reminders of where I’ve been and where I’m going. I miss my friends. A lot. I’ll get to see quite a few of them in a few weeks, and sometimes I tear up just thinking about how joyous it’s going to be. I might cry when I see every once of them/you if you’re going to be there!. You never know. Special friends. Celebrating a most important time in my life. With me. In the same room. Breaking bread. Laughing. Oh my gosh, I can’t wait to laugh. To reminisce. To share. To get updates on lives. To hug necks. A lot. We don’t even need to go anywhere. To be present with women that have made and continue to make an impact on my life will be oh-so-special. And long overdue.

So, back to writing this letter I go. It’s the very least I can do, and I do so thankful. Teary eyed. Truly blessed. For the years I have experienced and the years that are ahead of me. And thinking of those who were along tho journey of those 4 years with me. Man, we went through a heck of a lot together.

I highly recommend Dr. Haas for full professor, by the way. In case you were wondering. Go Panthers!

Much Joy, Love, and Peace.

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