I just got the news. My dad just turned in his papers that he won't be returning to CHS next year. He and my mom will be submitting their mission papers in the spring. I've known my entire life that they would someday serve a mission. I know I'll miss them while they're gone, and that they'll miss out on things happening here. It's weird to think that my dad is old enough to retire. Or rather, I'm old enough that my dad is about to retire. But the thing that's making me bawl like a baby right now is..."Don" won't be at CHS anymore. How can CHS be CHS without Don Carlos? He's been teaching there since I was like five years old.
As a girl, I would look at his yearbooks that he would bring home at the end of every year. I'd look up my dad, and then memorize all the faces and names of everyone older than me. I remember seeing pictures of him dressed up like a hippy, pictures of him with the Spanish Club, or pictures of him coaching the boys freshmen basketball teams.
I remember looking forward to the day that I could someday have my dad as a teacher. Once ninth grade hit, I was in Spanish, sitting in my dad's class. Somehow, it didn't seem so cool all of a sudden. I worried that maybe my dad wasn't cool, or what if the other kids didn't like my dad. I wouldn't even look at him or talk to him. Fortunately, Echo and Elise helped me realize that I could talk in class and that my dad was funny. I soon realized that my dad WAS cool. I loved my dad. I loved that my dad was Don Carlos.
I took Spanish the next year too. I remember learning "La Bamba" which I still say and sing amazingly well if I say so myself!
I loved that my dad decided to coach girls basketball my sophomore year. If he hadn't, I wouldn't have played anymore. I loved having my dad as my coach. Sometimes I felt as though I wasn't good enough for him, but to this day, I feel like my dad thinks I was great at what I did best. Stealing the ball.
It's been fun watching all seven of us kids take Spanish from OUR dad. Who else can say that?
Being able to say that my dad is Don Carlos, has given me so much self esteem my whole life. I've been proud to say that I'm a Banks. I've been proud to say that he's MY dad. He's been a wonderful example of that. Something that I hope I can do for my own children.
So dad, Don Carlos, I love you. Thank you for giving me such a sense of self worth. Thank you for being a hard worker, demanding modesty in your classes, being honest, supporting me in all my extra curricular activities at CHS. CHS will not be the same without you.
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