White Dog came out of the office where Steve was working on his MBA thesis. "This time next month," she reminder herself AND me, "dad will be done! He will have completed the program and gotten his degree! Of course, we won't be able to attend the ceremony."
"I am not sure dad is going to walk across the stage," I told her. Of course, Steve attends EVERY graduation because he is a department head and gets to wear the gown and stoles of his position. But that is for his students. When I ask about HIS big day, he just shrugs. "Whether he walks or not," Sweet One, "you know we will celebrate!"
It has been, and still is, a rigorous journey. It is one that Steve managed to squeeze into an already full life of teaching, administrating, volunteering, and caring for us all. We are proud of his determination and dedication...not to mention his highest honors in grades. He has worked hard.
And he acknowledges he has not done it without the help of the White Dog Army. They have devotedly risen before dawn to sit at his side supervising as he worked at the computer. They have given up walks and car rides and opportunities to just have fun. The WDA has understood the importance of Steve's commitment. They have been patient and encouraging even when it was hard to ignore the bright warm days calling them to adventure.
So when our personal giant shining ball drops to announce the beginning of a new era for Steve, we will celebrate in our hugest White Dog fashion...for Steve's accomplishment most certainly, but also for the efforts given by every member in our family.
And THAT is the horizon upon which we focus during these last few very intense final days. Success. Family. Love.