Kaitlin Hofer

Kaitlin Hofer

University of Manitoba

I want to thank my mom and dad because...
I didn't grow up in a small town or a big city, I was born and raised, until the age of ten, in a Hutterite colony near Pilot Mound, Manitoba. In November 2008 my parents packed up their three kids, myself being the youngest, and moved out of our colony, to the town of Carman, MB, where I went to elementary school and then high school. I had to assimilate at a rapid pace to an unknown environment. My everyday routine for the past ten years was now gone, which meant I had to change the way I dressed and the language I spoke, it was all very frightening. I definitely did not thank my parents at first, in fact I just wanted to go home, but my parents didn't, and so I didn't. For nearly ten years I haven't been able to thank them for the immensely difficult decision they made, until recently. What my mom and dad did gave me opportunities that I never would have had in the colony, like travelling, getting real work experience, having my own bank account as well as a credit card that lets me build a good credit rating, and being that I am a girl, acquiring a drivers license would have been more of an obstacle for me to overcome in a colony. My parents were and are at a disadvantage, both financially and mentally, given that they have not had my whole life to prepare, for me heading off to university. I am inspired by what they've done with nearly ten years of independence, and I could not be more proud of their accomplishments. I would not be writing this letter if my mom and dad had not left my first home, because I would have never been given the option to go to university. Although, because of what my parents did for myself and my older brother and sister, I graduated from a public school with honours and I am going to university. Thank you mom and dad, for giving me the chance to live up to my full potential, despite the odds, thank you for letting me spread my wings and fly. It took me many years to be happy here, I went through many struggles, but I am ecstatic that I am here now, I love you very much. -kaitlin
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