“Graduation for Two”
Determined and Dedicated, just like the story of The Little Engine That Could. Dedication is defined as, “wholly committed to a particular course of thought or action, devoted.”
May 20, 2012, I celebrated the High School graduation of my daughter. It was 100% her day to shine and shine she did. I remember thinking seventeen years ago that in the year 2012 she will graduate. Seventeen years seemed like a long time and far into the future. There were many struggles and challenges to be faced but if something doesn’t challenge you, you’re not growing.
When you think about the future it seems so far away but when that long-anticipated date arrives it feels like you began the journey toward the event only yesterday. The past may provide comfort; yet the future offers opportunity.
Although we experienced up’s and down’s during those seventeen years we stayed the course and took life one day at a time and embraced the changes along the way. The quote: “This too shall pass” is true whether dealing with good times or bad.
Without a doubt, her graduation has been my most treasured and proud accomplishment. As a single parent, raising her has been my primary focus. I did so with passion and a desire to give her the best foundation possible; just like my parents did for me and my siblings.
Therefore, this day was a graduation for me as well. Seeing what an amazing adult my child has grown into gave me more honor and pride than anything I’ve ever done. Parenting is the toughest job you’ll ever love. All those moments turn into days, then years and before you know it, your child is off to college, traveling or starting families of their own.
I cried tears of joy watching Senior Videos, attending graduation parties and, of course, at the Commencement. Principal Phil Clark of Olathe South gave an awesome speech, emphasizing “Live Your Life”. The energy and excitement will forever be etched in my memory.
Being a dedicated and involved parent allowed me to be part of so many lives and I’m quite sentimental as I see the kids all grown up and moving into the next stage of life…adulthood.
Did you know that 90% of your lifetime habits develop by the time you’re eighteen? We are always role models and in those first eighteen years they learn more from our actions than our words. Where you spend your time and money reflects your priorities.
Spend time with your children. Find things to talk to them about. “Monkey see, monkey do!” If you aren’t taking care of you with good habits you have not set a good example for them to follow. It’s not about being perfect so let go of that misconception. Simply do the little things, good choices turn into habits, thus better health for a much more enjoyable life.
Recommended Reading: “The Reunion” is a delightful book written by my friend, Dan Stalp, about four high school students reconnecting. The story provides four different perspectives.