Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Note From the Supreme Court......

Hey Y'all!

Well Paddington (or Pitty Pat, which is his current nickname for the week) and I have been VERY busy learning to sit! We had our first obedience lesson on Monday, and ever since then 3 to 4 times a day we have been practicing, practicing! Pitty Pat is a very smart student (if I say so) and is doing very well. We are still having issues with the potty training.... and I am a little worried since I go back to work next week. Our main issue is that he is being silly and wants to eat his poopy. I have some remedies that I am going to try and see if this helps. It is REALLY gross, but according to several experts, puppies do this. UGHHH!

Pitty Pat had a birthday this week! On Tuesday he turned 5 months old! So far, I haven't noticed a difference, except that now he will nap a little bit more than usual. I don't know if this is because he has been neutered, but he has calmed down a bit! He still has his wild and crazy moments, but overall he is growing up. He is cutting 5 teeth right now, so he is chewing like a silly boy. :) He is also growing! He is gaining weight, but he is also growing longer! His face has changed too! His hair is still thin, and hopefully in a month or too his coat will come back in.

Anyhoo... you may have heard on the news today that they confirmed Sonia Sotomayor, who is the first Hispanic woman to be appointed to the Supreme Court. While this is exciting news, it brought back a memory to me that I just had to share!

When I was in high school, we had just moved to Columbia, SC. I was a freshmen in a class of just over 1,000. Gulp. My freshmen year I had an English teacher who was wonderful. Although I had to hike way across the parking lot out to her portable every morning...she was always beaming and ready to see us! Her name was Mrs. Hefner. (She is still Mrs. Hefner. Her husband is now superintendent of Richland School District 2!) She was so very kind to me. I think she saw something in me that other teachers hadn't noticed. Maybe she noticed how much I LOVED to read. She also loved the way I wrote. One of our first assignments was to write a letter to someone famous or someone that we admired. Of course, most of my classmates wrote to rock stars and football heroes. Andre Agassi was a big back then! The writer in me was curious to write to someone who had accomplished something extraordinary. Since that really limited me, and at the time, we had NO INTERNET, I had to use an encyclopedia. I settled on writing to Sandra Day O'Connor. For those of you who don't know your American History, Sandra Day O'Connor was the FIRST WOMAN appointed to the Supreme Court. Ronald Regan appointed her in 1981. In my letter I indicated to her that I was curious about how she came to be a lawyer and then a judge. I asked her what advice she had for me as I was just beginning to think about my career path. My thoughts were writer, teacher, maybe lawyer. I was also curious as to what her days were like and if her family supported her during her rise to the top court in the nation. I finished my letter, shared it with my teacher, we put a stamp on it, and mailed it. I didn't expect a response. About a month went by and several of my classmates received autographed postcards from their folks, but no true response.

One day I walked into class and I had a fancy envelope sitting on my desk with the return address OF THE SUPREME COURT! Mrs. Hefner was BEAMING!


I rushed over to Mrs. Hefner and we held our breath as I carefully opened the envelope. I wanted to treasure this, even if it was your standard reply form letter. I mean it had been sent from the Supreme Court and I wasn't being subpoenaed! Y'all. This. So. Wasn't. A. Form. Letter.

Mrs. O'Connor said she was delighted to hear from a student and she said she was honored that I had chosen her to write to. She explained to me that she had to study very hard and had wonderful teachers to support her, especially in law school. She encouraged me to do what my heart told me to and that I would always be happy if I did something that I loved. She said that she loved being on the Supreme Court and that she was challenged and learned something new everyday. She ended the letter by thanking me and she wished me well in my future. She signed the letter "Sandra Day O'Connor." She didn't use her title, just her name.

To this day, I always think of her kindness in replying to me and taking the time to share her thoughts on how she was successful. Needless to say, I got an A+ on my project. I still have the letter today. It is a cherished memento.

So today's thought is, always take a moment to help someone out. You never know how much you may end up influencing their life later on. Mrs. Hefner and Sandra Day O'Connor taught me that!

:) JKP

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