Saturday, May 24, 2008

Life has just begun

Thursday night, we watched a group of 287 seniors walk across the field to get their high school diplomas. Our granddaughter was one of those students.

Most of those students were anxious to get the diploma in hand and head out for a new life. Our granddaughter was among those students that wanted to ‘vacate’ the premises immediately. She will be in college in the fall and can hardly wait. She will be embarking on a new way of life for a young girl. Hopefully, it will be an experience of a life time for her and all the other college-bound students. And, there are many of those from this graduating class.

The crowd was overflowing for this year to see the graduating class walk that last mile in their high school. And we got to see the last funny pranks by those boys and girls, ranging from blowing balloons and bouncing them over the heads of the graduates until they were taken away to giving the principal a bouncy ball when they received their diplomas. The seniors unleashed 1500 bouncy balls for their senior day prank this year. Every year the seniors have a funny prank they pull on the staff. I can imagine how long it took for them to pick up those bouncy balls, too. But, then, it was clean fun for the kids! We wondered why they didn’t just let the blue balloons bounce through the crowd all night instead of taking them up. Clean fun is much better than the kids doing some nasty prank.

When the last diploma was given and the students were presented to the large crowd as graduates, hats when up in unison. And they all got out of their seats, running across the field, ending in little groups, congratulating others on their accomplishment. Of course, a few of those students didn’t get their diplomas that night because of their not passing all their exit exams. That will have to be accomplished before the diplomas are handed out. Otherwise, they will have to take a GED test.

As those students began to disassemble and go their separate ways, I thought about our years in school and those of our two children. We seemed to be grown and most of us were off to jobs. My daughter married and had 4 children, the second of whom just graduated. Our older son went off to college and worked all through his college career. I wonder how these graduates will meet the challenge to grow into mature adults, able to manage their lives as responsible adults. They think they are grown now, having made it through high school. But tough times will surely come for most of them, challenges that they will have to learn to overcome. I pray that each of them have learned it’s okay to come back to their parents for advice and don’t think they are too old to need help with every day problems. They need to realize that parents have gone through similar things and can be a sounding board for troubles. It is much better for them to come to their parents than go to a peer. Peers seem to have the same outlook on life as the one seeking advice, and sometimes their advice is not what the seeker needs to hear.

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