It has been a tradition of mine to write about various family members or godchildren when important events happen. So this week, since my sister recently had a birthday, I thought it was time to honor Maryann. (I try to share a little bit more about me because being a principal in two schools, I now miss the morning drop off and afternoon pick up times when I would often make more personal connections with families. If students read this message, it might help them see me in a different light than just the principal!)
Maryann has always been someone who knows what she wants and goes for it. She worked hard as a student to achieve her goals. Going off to college was tough for Maryann and she wanted to transfer back to our local college. But after a conversation with our dad, (although the story varies from both sides) Maryann felt my dad told her she would be “quitting” if she left Keene. After hearing that, she was out to prove him wrong and not disappoint him. She stayed at Keene State, graduated with honors and received two degrees (bachelor’s and associate’s).
Growing up we shared a bedroom. It was during this time where many of our disagreements occurred. At points, there would appear a line of tape dividing her side of the room and my side of the room. Other times, one of us would return from playing outside and there would be a pile of “our stuff” in a gigantic mess on the designated side of the room.
The main way we would release our anger with each other was to have massive stuffed animal fights. However, after calling a truce there was always that one last stuffed animal that would go flying and it would make us start to laugh and forget about why we were fighting in the first place.
I have become a better teacher and principal by watching and listening to her be a mom. Through hard work, communication, modeling, patience, kindness, listening and love, she and my brother-in-law, Scott, are raising two amazing and funny teenagers. Following in our mother’s footsteps, I have seen Maryann put other needs before her own. She is often the first one to reach out to a friend in need. I have watched her put her educational knowledge of early childhood into play as her children have gone through the different stages of development. I have seen her be consistent with her expectations and discipline. I have seen her modeling of compassion, love, humor and hard work pay off tenfold, not only with her own children, but with our family, her friends and in her community.
I am so lucky to have been Maryann’s sister and twin for my whole life! I am blessed by the many memories and experiences we have shared. Most importantly, I am looking forward to growing old with her and for all the things we have left to do!
Happy Birthday and I Love You!