Caylee Goes To UVM

Trey Whitaker
2 min readJul 15, 2022


Written: November 2015


As you head off on your next great adventure, I wanted to pass along my hopes for you.

  1. Take care of yourself. This is the most important consideration of all. Get your sleep. Eat well. Exercise. Make good decisions about your health and well-being.
  2. Seize the opportunity. Just like with high school, the time will pass too quickly and, before you realize it, you’ll be graduating again. You’ve worked hard to get here. Cherish the time and dive in.
  3. Explore new things. New activities. New viewpoints. A new city. The countryside. College is an opportunity to learn and become even more of your own person. Take this chance to enjoy new adventures.
  4. Communicate. It’s nearly impossible to over communicate. Keep the lines of communication open with your mother, grandmother and aunt. They will appreciate this immensely and will talk about hearing from you for the rest of the day.
  5. Be assertive. Reach out to family, friends and professors when you or others need help. State your views when you have them. Don’t be bashful. Your viewpoints and feelings are both valuable and important.
  6. Make new friends but keep your old ones. You’re a wonderful person and will certainly make new friends. You can never have too many of the right kind of friends. Try to stay connected to your good friends and keep them in your life. Good friends equal a good life.
  7. Have confidence in yourself. You didn’t accomplish all that you have by luck or magic. It was your talent, spirit and hard work. You can achieve anything you put your mind and energy to. It will not always be easy but nothing worthwhile is gained without blood, sweat and tears. It will be worth it.
  8. Spend a little time at the end of each day preparing for the next. Settling and organizing things in the evening will allow you to sleep better. It will also make the next morning more settled without the frantic rush to gather yourself and pull things together.
  9. Time goes by quickly — don’t waste it. The past 18 years have been a whirlwind. It seems impossible that our little peanut of a baby girl is a college student. The next 18 years will fly by just as quickly. Savor your time. Spend it wisely. Do things that bring joy to your heart and make the world a better place.
  10. Most of all, know that we’re always here for you. To celebrate the victories and to help with the struggles. You are our passion and our joy. We’re proud of our beautiful, smart, caring daughter. One call or one text and we can be there in a moments time. We’ll miss you dearly but our excited for you. We’ll be counting down the days until we see you again.



Trey Whitaker

Former CrossFit gym owner, corporate manager, paratrooper, youth sports coach and jujitsu black belt. Now a trail steward at Haleakala National Park on Maui.