a life well lived

Monday, April 7, 2014

Happy Birthday, Mim!

Our first daughter was born 56 years ago today.  We named her Joann K *, but the nurse called her "little Missy" whenever she brought her to me and that name stuck.  Over the years, it went from Missy to Mimmy to Mim.

Mim is and always has been remarkable.  When I think about her manyaccomplishments over the years, since she was very young, I wonder at her talents, focus and dedication to whatever cause she holds dear. 

In addition to coaching a boy’s football team – Mim’s Monsters – in her early teens, she started a club for the Alden Road kids.  Mim took it very seriously, putting in many hours organizing for the weekly meetings.  She really put members of the Explorer’s Club through their paces, with all sorts of projects and activities.  For many years, she even put on a 3-night camp in our backyard every summer (in spite of living right next door from the campers’ home or or down the road, she had the hard & fast rule that anyone who went home during camp were out; gave it the feel of real “away” camp).   

In her twenties, Mim attended an off-Broadway theater workshop and lived in Greenwich Village for a summer.  She attended college at the University of Houston and at the remarkable Berry College in Rome, Georgia. 

In her thirties, she traveled for over a month to the Hawaiian Islands and spent 6 weeks in Ireland.  She started work on a liberal arts degree from New York University, attending a special evening class, commuting from Bryn Athyn to New York 3 times a week the first year, twice a week the second, and as needed for the last, and she graduated in 1981.  She was a never-to-be-forgotten housemother to 1st grade boys (mostly black children from single parent families) at Girard College, taking them up to Penny's farm in Kempton for a weekend in the country, bringing them out to Bryn Athyn for special events, and doing all sorts of  amazingly creative projects with them throughout the year. 

In her forties, she started working on her Masters in Social Work at Rutgers University in north central New Jersey. She has made north central NJ her home, living a a block from the shore and about 1 1/2 hours from BA.

Today, Mim has a private practice working with autistic children.  She was recognized a few years ago by the state legislature of New Jersey for her volunteer work with the organization for autistic support, receiving a official proclamation passed by the state legislature - very impressive, with fancy lettering and a big impressive seal.

That's my "bippith" (or "princess"  as her Dad always called her).  There never was and there never will be anyone like Mim.  I am proud that she is my daughter.  May her wonders never cease.    

Love to one & all - Mim's Mom

*  I balked at Pete's request that we call our first girl after me; we compromised,  giving her just the initial & letting her decide for herself.  It took until just before she received her MSL to finally pick one - Kiernan.

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