Dear Flint Hill School Families,
The cold weather has taken us all by surprise this week, but I hope it doesn’t hold you back from enjoying the spring season. The grass has turned green, trees have budded, flowers have bloomed all over, and before long we are going to be enjoying that incredibly beautiful time that spring brings with it. Still, the cold temperatures have made us all stop and think. In fact, I have heard people lamenting, “I can’t believe it has turned cold again! What is wrong with this weather?” It is human nature to find things to complain about, things that frustrate us, or to sometimes think that life is meant to be smooth and effortless, when in reality we all know that it just doesn’t happen that way. There are always challenges. There are always moments when we can either choose to grow and expand our opportunities or look at things a little differently.
A friend of mine always uses the expression, “keep it in perspective.” No matter what happens, he always says, “keep it in perspective.” There are times when we don’t want to hear that, but there are plenty of times when it is important to think about life this way. We can be frustrated, disappointed and feel absolutely indignant about a whole host of things, but we need to step back at times and keep things in perspective. There are issues that all of us face on a daily basis. However, there are other situations that make us realize that some of our worries are really minimal — whether it is something as simple as the weather or something more significant in our personal or professional lives — perspective can show us how small these challenges are compared to what others may have to deal with.
I shared something with our faculty and staff yesterday that drives home this concept of perspective. I am sharing it with you as well because while we need to use it as an example as how to keep things in perspective, there may be a chance that someone, somewhere in our school family, can put into action our vision of always taking meaningful risks, being ourselves and making a difference by providing support.
We recently received word that Matt Tsun, a graduate of the Class of 2004, has been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia and will require a bone marrow transplant. A number of Matt’s fellow classmates have rallied around him for support, however there is much more work to be done. Matt is Chinese American, and minorities are severely underrepresented on the bone marrow donor list. While Matt could find a match from anyone regardless of race, his best chances are with someone of Chinese descent. This is where our school family has the opportunity to truly make a difference. We have offered to support Matt on his path to recovery by spreading the word far and wide about donor registration, not only for Matt, but for others who would also benefit from a far more robust pool of donors.
I invite you to learn more about Matt’s story here and to consider spreading the word as best as any of us can. Our sense of school family is one of our great strengths as a school and I am certain that Matt, his fiance Jessica King, who is also a Flint Hill alumna, and his wonderful family will appreciate our “Driving Spirit” and our enduring commitment to supporting him and others in this effort. So as we move forward, let’s keep the concept of perspective in mind and recognize that one of our own family members truly does need our help. Please know that whatever we can do to help Matt would truly make a difference.
Enjoy the rest of this week! I look forward to seeing Grade 8 families tonight at the Community of Concern event, and Lower School families on Friday at the Family Engineering Night.
Best wishes to you!
John M. Thomas