Michelle Obama dropped in on a few people recording messages to her, and the results will probably make you cry. A handful of people were selected to face Obama’s portrait and tell her what she means to them, but little did they know that FLOTUS herself was in the wings secretly watching their thank-yous on a monitor. After each person finished their tribute, Obama stepped out and surprised the living daylights out of these very lucky (but also very flustered) people.
The first was a young woman who said that because of Obama, “I know that my race does not define who I am or what I can accomplish.” When Obama walked in — immediate tears.
The second was also a young woman, who took a deep breath before she started and said, “Thank you for making me a more confident woman.” Obama walked on — tears. (Though she did manage to hold it together long enough to assert that yes, indeed, she would like to work for Obama someday.)
Next, a young man said, “I feel the same way about you that I feel about the best teachers that I’ve ever had — those special teachers that you never forget, because they realize the powerful influence they can have.” Though he didn’t quite burst into tears, he looked as though he couldn’t believe his eyes when Obama walked out from behind a curtain. (He probably couldn’t.)
Another young woman called Obama “a total inspiration to all of us,” and when Obama showed up, she managed to blurt out that it was “really an honor” to meet her. Oh, yeah — and more tears.
A dad said he wanted to thank her “because my daughter looks up to you, and I don’t even think she knows exactly all the ways,” adding that his daughter has tried the salad bar at her school because of Obama and values her kindness. No tears here, but — well, a bit of a flush, we’ll put it that way.
Last, a former college pal of Obama’s showed up. “Long time no see. Just wanted to stop by and say hello and… just how much I’ve appreciated you as the first lady these last eight years.” And then she reunited with her fellow alum.
As usual, Obama was the picture of class and elegance throughout all five of these encounters, and made it only more painfully clear how sad people are about saying goodbye to her as FLOTUS. Same, same. Jan. 20 cannot come slowly enough.