My 17yo son has graduated from high school.
The end of 13 years of homework struggles, 13 years of report card anxiety, 13 years of parent-teacher conferences and dropoff/pickup arrangements. The end! Woohooo! *Throws hat in the air*
Of course, the end of one era often signals the beginning of another era. For my son, this marks the beginning of his years as a young adult, and the start of college. Which of course, means a few more years of homework struggles and report-card anxiety (for him). It also means, hopefully, his entry into the workforce as a scrub, like the rest of us had to do at some point in our youth. Yes, kid, I want fries with that. Welcome to the Real World.
As my son and his class marched along to Pomp and Circumstances in their flowing green robes and tasseled hats, I was filled with pride, relief, and excitement about my son’s next phase of life and what it may bring. I was also filled with thoughts about the very idea of graduation. According to Merriam Webster, one definition of “graduate” is: to pass from one stage of experience, proficiency, or prestige to a usually higher one. We all graduate numerous times throughout our lives. We graduate from high school and begin college. We graduate from childhood to become young adults. We graduate from university to begin our careers. From single-hood to married life. From being green, inexperienced neophytes to experts in our field.
Our graduations, as we ascend the staircase of life, don’t always come with flowing robes and tasseled hats. We don’t always celebrate each rite-of-passage with parties and hoopla. But maybe we should. Maybe, each time we accomplish an important, long-term goal or achievement, we should celebrate just like graduates on the day of their high school or college graduation. You did it! You passed! Your hard work and dedication has paid off, and now you have the reward of entering a new phase in your life. Drink up friends. Let’s cut the cake and throw our hats in the air, and celebrate our life’s successes together.
Playlist for Graduates of All Kinds
Unwritten –– Natasha Bedingfield
Graduation (Friends Forever) — Vitamin C
It’s Time — Imagine Dragons
Ain’t it Fun? — Hayley Williams
School’s Out — Alice Cooper
It’s Good to Be Alive — Andy Grammer
The Climb — Miley Cyrus
On Top of the World — Imagine Dragons
I Hope You Dance — Lee Ann Womack
Don’t You Forget About Me — Simple Minds
Closing Time — Semisonic
It’s My Life — Bon Jovi
100 Years — Five for Fighting
World — Five for Fighting
Titanium — David Guetta (ft. Sia)
Best Day of My Life — American Authors
Celebration — Kool & the Gang
Hall of Fame — The Script