"God must love the common man, He made so many of them..." Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


So my “baby” girl graduated from high school two weeks ago. Cue the nostalgic mood music. It was just yesterday that she let me do her hair, pick out her clothes, and buckle her into a car seat. Stop the music. Today she does her own hair, picks out her clothes, and (hopefully) buckles up before peeling out. How did this happen overnight? After all, I just graduated…25 years ago.

High school graduation is an important milestone, whether it feels like that or not. It means you are educated, whether it feels like that or not. It means you met standards, whether it feels like it or not. It means you worked hard, whether it feels like that or not. It means you are ready for adulthood, whether it feels like that or not.

Graduation prompts an interesting behavior I call grudge evaporation. Grudge evaporation happens when all of your classmates are your friends because you’ll probably never see some of them again. Gone as if by magic are those petty leftover grudges from grades gone by. She didn’t share? Oh well. He didn’t call? Too bad. He spit in your hair in the 6th grade? So what. She told her other best friend who told her cousin who told her other best friend who told her mom who told your mom? Who cares. Bygones are bygones. Say goodbye and move on.

High school can be an all-consuming never-ending cycle of friends, homework, and activities. Graduation puts a screeching halt to the old familiar routines and flings wide open the door to the future. Yes, Virginia, there is life after high school. A lot of it. For me, at least 25 years’ worth so far. Colleges, careers, vacations, lazy days, new houses, new friends, new spouses, kids, pets, cars – the list of life goes on and on. And the best part of post-grad life? Who you have been is not necessarily who you become.

So to my own graduate and by extension to recent graduates everywhere, enjoy becoming you. To us older and wiser graduates, let’s just keep on becoming ourselves – we’re not done yet!