As we prepare for some time away from RHS ~ please accept our very best wishes for a wonderful holiday season and a new year filled with much love, luck and happiness.
Regardless of the many years that I have spent in education, this school community as a whole continues to impress me as I marvel at what we collectively are able to accomplish. The bottom line is always providing our students with the best possible high school experience and everything we do is aimed at that goal.
As educators we are always concerned and wondering if what we impart on a daily basis is not only learned but will it provide our graduates with the tools they need to be successful. We consistently rank at the top, win all types of awards and trophies, ace tests and improve scores with the best of them ~ hands down. That said, in speaking with many different students and staff members and asking them about the times that stand out the most ~ inevitably the response refers to how someone made them feel ~ who gave the gift of time ~ time to care about the whole person, time to build trust ~ time to create the foundation of a relationship on which all else could stand. I believe we could say that as parents too ~ that the time we get with our families, our children, our own parents ~ is not only the best gift but one that provides the kind of memories that last a lifetime.
I’ll share a story about the gift of time ~
The Thing I Value Most
It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him.
Over the phone, his mother told him, “Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday.” Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.
“Jack, did you hear me?”
“Oh, sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It’s been so long since I thought of him. I’m sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago,” Jack said.
“Well, he didn’t forget you. Every time I saw him he’d ask how you were doing. He’d reminisce about the many days you spent over ‘his side of the fence,’ as he put it,” Mom told him.
“I loved that old house he lived in,” Jack said.
“You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man’s influence in your life,” she said.
“He’s the one who taught me carpentry,” he said. “I wouldn’t be in this business if it weren’t for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important… Mom, I’ll be there for the funeral,” Jack said.
As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown.
Mr. Belser’s funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away.
The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time.
Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time.
The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture… Jack stopped suddenly.
“What’s wrong, Jack?” his Mom asked.
“The box is gone,” he said.
“What box? ” Mom asked.
“There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he’d ever tell me was ‘the thing I value most,'” Jack said.
It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it.
“Now I’ll never know what was so valuable to him,” Jack said. “I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom.”
It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died. Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. “Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days,” the note read.
Early the next day Jack retrieved the package.
The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention.
“Mr. Harold Belser,” it read.
Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope.
Jack’s hands shook as he read the note inside.
“Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It’s the thing I valued most in my life.” A small key was taped to the letter.
His heart racing, tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch. Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover.
Inside he found these words engraved: “Jack, thanks for your time! Harold Belser.”
“The thing he valued most… was… my time.”
Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days.
“Why?” Janet, his assistant asked.
“I need some time to spend with my son,” he said.
“Oh, by the way, Janet… thanks for your time!”
Our wish for you is to have some quality time with those who matter most! Enjoy a safe, happy and healthy holiday season and a very HAPPY NEW YEAR! Thank you for sharing your children with us~ they are a tremendous gift.
P.S. summer is exactly 180 days, 4 hours, 18 minutes and 27 seconds away ( from this moment of typing 🙂
P.P.S The Cowboys are 12-2