On Saying Goodbye and Saying Hello

Posted on August 7th, 2015 by

Yesterday was the last day of summer camps.

We are saying goodbye.

And we are saying hello.

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We are saying goodbye to our first summer without Steve. And saying hello to our commitment to continue, carry on, and expand the TLC vision he began and we believe in.

We are saying goodbye to the #7 rated dining service food in the country; and hello to cooking for ourselves again. (WHAAAAAAT?)

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We are saying goodbye to the long hours of work; and hello to the long hours of naps. We are saying goodbye to our comfort zone of like-minded people who think the Three Crowns of attitude, effort, and sportsmanship, and the philosophy of accepting the things we cannot change and changing the things we can, can actually be applied in practical ways on the court and in life; and hello to a sometimes uncomfortable world that may be indifferent to these principles, where we might feel alone at times.

We are saying goodbye to a place of magic; and hello to a world that needs that magic and has us – campers and staff alike – as ambassadors facing a daunting, but possible, task.

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We are saying goodbye to the look of happiness on campers’ faces when they get a stroke right, or a relationship right, in a new way for the first time; and hello to preparing for next year’s campers so they can have that same opportunity.

We are saying goodbye to scholarship campers whose lives have been changed by the generosity of strangers, and hello to raising funds again so more and more of these kids can experience TLC.

We are saying goodbye to GVS and the smile it brings to anyone who has ever heard the words ring out, “THREE! TWO! ONE!….”; and hello to the memory of that moment that brings back the same smile every time we think of it.

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We are saying goodbye to the camper who said “Goodbye” to his old serve after ten years of not being able to let go and trust the same advice he’d been given for ten years, and then… he did ; and hello to next year’s camper who will be ready after twenty years to let go, trust, and switch her backhand. (Yes, we actually believe this is possible).

We are saying goodbye to the skeptic who arrived at TLC with suspicion (“What have these people been drinking?”) and left saying, “Hmmm, it tastes pretty good.”

We are saying goodbye to our attempt to change others; and hello to our recommitment to change ourselves.

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Thank you for reading this blog and following along for the summer. It will be back in about a month and a half in some form or another. Or it won’t. One never knows. Goodbye. And hello!

And thank you.

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6 Comments

  1. Davina fanciullo says:

    Our family is so grateful to everyone at TLC, and the philosophy of the three crowns that are emphasized in tennis and everyday life. Your enthusiasm and positivity is incredible! We look forward to seeing our TLC family again next summer!

  2. Steph says:

    I made a conscious effort to greet my new adult students this summer by using my full effort to remember their 54 names . . . I was complimented by one of the students today for this, and I in turn attributed my efforts (and partial success?) to the wonderful example the TLC staff modeled for me in June.

    Your impact is meaningful and long lasting —

  3. jim turner says:

    I didn’t make it to camp this summer, I usually try to make it every other year or so. I have enjoyed your blog as it makes me feel, just for a while, like I am in the land of the three crowns. I miss Steve too, he touched so many lives including mine and my family’s, and your words help to keep his memories and spirit alive.
    Thank you.

  4. Karen Mann says:

    Hello, Goodby! Sounds like a great name for a song! Hopefully, we will look forward to another blessed Neal and Leandra concert next year! And of course, more tennis!!

  5. Brian says:

    Already looking forward to saying “hello” next summer. Thanks again for a fun, inspiring, and truly meaningful experience.

  6. Meg says:

    No! I won’t say goodbye! Only, till we meet again!
    Thank ALL OF YOU for making TLC my best 3 1/2 days of summer