With Love and Immense Gratitude

Today, as I often do, I sent The Ella Zoo to a mother who’s eldest daughter is almost off to college as a thank you gift for some kindness she had done for me and my family. In this case, it wasn’t a personal friend, but the First Lady of the United States. I’m not sure if Michelle Obama will ever receive the book or my letter, but I hope she will know how grateful we women and children are for her positive message and especially for bringing her show of support directly to our swing state.


Dear Mrs. Obama,

We are counting down the days until this bitterly contentious election year is finally over — 4 more days — with hopes that Thanksgiving can bring us together again, maybe.

In truth, I’d like to recoil, as any one naturally would, from the tumultuous currents now coursing through our embattled state. But this is too important for myself and my children. And so, I have gladly volunteered and faced what I could. But it has not been without fear.

Of course, I have voted already. After I saw you and Hilary at the rally, I immediately headed downtown and cast my ballot early. I want to thank you for bringing your elegant leadership, positive encouragement and, most importantly, for your shining example of support. I will point to the rally, I will show my children, how a popular friend can make a tremendous difference when she steps up as an ally to face a bully. If I have anything to look forward to, it is that when we look back at this terrible time in our nation’s history, we will have your family as examples of steadfast grace despite a barrage of ugliness. The Obamas have shone particularly bright at this difficult but necessary period of growth and change.

Please accept this small but heartfelt gift. It is a book I wrote, designed and self-published and it is my hope that, with it, I may in turn offer a positive and meaningful message for you as your beautiful girls grow and mature.

With love and immense gratitude,