This is my attempt to put my feelings about all this into words:
I've been working real hard, along with a great group of people, on a variety of projects to make life better for my members and workers in Connecticut and across the country.
Ebola, the elections, organizing, community engagement, coalition building between AFT locals and between us and other unions.
It takes a lot of time, a lot of effort, a lot of energy, by a lot of people.
Frankly, it seems overwhelming at times, and it seems exhausting at times, but never, never, never, does it seem to be not worth the effort.
Sometimes we face opposition from places we expect, like administrations and political parties, and sometimes from places we don't expect. But we carry on because we support each other.
Some of us share close relationships, some of us respect and feel a kinship from a distance.
We may disagree like siblings, but we stand united against opposition.
We win some battles and we lose some, and some we fight to a draw, and some we vow to continue fighting.
Sometimes we reach agreement and cooperation with those who would oppose us, sometimes we have to agree to disagree, and sometimes we have to be a little "bad ass."
We are united in that we fight for a cause, we fight for a movement, we fight for justice, we fight for respect for all.
We are a part of a bigger movement, "the movement", which includes organized labor, and others who share our beliefs that we can do better, that we can be fairer, that we can build a just society built on respect.
To my sisters and brothers in this movement, I want to share my gratitude for your leadership, inspiration, and example to me and others.
I want to encourage you with the words of Timothy:
"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith."
And the music of Dave Matthews:
Everyday, I get in the car, sometimes rested, sometimes not, and I push the CD in and listen to the words. I find inspiration in them as I find inspiration in you.