As I sit here thinking about my 16th year of teaching (which begins tomorrow..Sept. 1), I am thankful for all the support from my middle school colleagues and kids. This summer has been wonderful and scary all at the same time. The Denver conference was amazing, and after it was over, I got speaking gigs at Acceleron (brilliant people work there, and work hard for all DMD boys), and also at the 2nd annual Becker Conference at Mass. General Hospital. I spent time with friends at my lake, as well as relatives that I only see a few times a year. I am dating a wonderful woman, and I am excited to still be teaching middle school band and music.

I also got a power chair for the first time, and had to say goodbye to my 2002 Honda Accord. Instead, I bought at 2009 Chrysler MiniVan with a cockpit for controls. Although the state of NH helped me financially, I now face 20% of payments on a power chair, a $16,000 car loan, and insurance for a vehicle with a total cost of $108,000. Just for fun, I bought a new bed...

Besides being in debt, having to expand my garage to fit my new van, dealing with a new ceiling lift in my bathroom, and managing continuing weakness, I feel blessed. Through all my frustration I know that there are many people that let me ride on their shoulders. In part, I believe it is my positive spirit that things will work out, and I subscribe to the following credo every morning: "Who's life will be better because I got out of bed today?"

We live, we fight, we endure, we hope.

Another day.

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Comment by Veronica E. on September 1, 2010 at 10:14am
Wow. I love the "Who's life will be better because I got out of bed today?" credo. I'm going to have to try to think about that each morning as I grumpily get out of bed! :)
Comment by Christine Piacentino on August 31, 2010 at 9:34pm
Well said Pat! I hope the 2010/2011 school year brings you great pride and accomplishments. Just think of all the young minds you can corrupt :-). A little tongue and cheek, I am sure your students will be inspired to perform at their best, just because they have you for a teacher.
Comment by Darcy Tumminello on August 31, 2010 at 6:36pm
Thanks for sharing Pat! Have a great 2010-2011 school year. You really give me hope for my son and all boys with MD.
I love the encouring outlook you have on life.

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