There were many reasons for the tears welling up in my eyes as YaYa and I sat side by side in a high school gym. The muscle spasm in my right glut was just one of them. With the open house being scheduled on the same day as my half marathon I had no time for deep stretching and foam rolling following the race. As it was, I barely made it home on time. We left 20 minutes after my return home and rushed to get there on time. Now, here we were center stage and two rows from the front.
We listened to high school seniors rave about their high school experience and how a future of opportunities was theirs for the taking. Following graduation, these students would file off to only the best of colleges. My mind couldn’t help but leap forward to the day that YaYa might be in their shoes – successfully having enjoyed the bulk of his high school days and looking forward to college and beyond. The thought brought on hope and sadness all at the same time.
YaYa’s father had a love for education. I remember how proud he was to attend his oldest son’s graduation from high school. I remember how much I was looking forward to seeing BoBo do the same. But, for reasons I cannot go into, I was not able to have that moment.
Certainly these students were hand-picked for the job. Public speaking was well within their comfort level and, having obviously taken advantage of all that the school had to offer. But these four were only a few of the incredible young adults we encountered. As the tour continued, we encountered many along the way. It’s no wonder that each year nearly 1,500 applicants apply for the 400 available spots in the school. These statistics, coupled with the list of criteria that are reviewed, is enough to discourage the interested even before they have submitted their applications. And that doesn’t even take into account the cost for school tuition.
Yet, 3 hours later, we left the school totally jazzed about the possibilities this could open up to YaYa. When we returned home, YaYa started working on homework assignments due midweek. I, on the other hand, began contemplating the pain staking task of working out my body’s newest aches and pains. The foam roller was waiting.