Over the past two weeks I’ve been privileged to celebrate milestones with my daughter, her friends, and with our local high school students. Our youngest graduated from college last weekend. While we were busy packing up her life for the past four years, I was able to see all she has accomplished in college: photos with new and forever friends filled frames and bulletin boards; stacks of science books and binders filled with notes were testament to the many hours of studying in the library and classroom; old and new uniforms merged together to represent her love for cheer that will now take on a new chapter after college. And while a little sadness tugged at my heart knowing those boxes filled with her things would move to Houston and not back to her hometown, my emotions quickly evolved to excitement and pride–my little girl was launching once again to pursue her goals and dreams. As a parent, it is what I have been preparing her for since the day she was born. And there we were–watching, celebrating, preparing, and encouraging her as she was leaving one milestone to pursue the next one.
This weekend, I had the honor of presenting high school diplomas to three outstanding young women and watching countless others walk across the stage to receive theirs. We party-hopped all weekend to graduation parties where moms and dads proudly displayed photos and awards of academic and athletic achievements along with acceptance letters and t-shirts representing the future school their son or daughter will make their life at, cheer for, and represent next fall. As I watch these students and families celebrate, I am grateful that I’ve been privileged to share a piece of their journey with them. Many of these students I’ve known before they graced the halls of our high school, and I look ahead with parent-like eyes as I am filled with enthusiasm and excitement for their futures and all they hope to and will accomplish.
And today, Memorial Day, we celebrate and honor the past. How fitting: after all, the academic achievements and milestones we celebrate in graduation ceremonies are, in part, because of the freedom we have to pursue an education in this country–thanks to those who fight and sacrifice daily for those freedoms we often take for granted. As I got ready this morning, this song ran on my playlist and prompted me to write today. Many have sacrificed and given all for the freedoms we enjoy–what better way to honor them than to continue to pursue the dream they fight for every day. To all of us–graduates and parents alike–may you continue to be the explorers and adventurers in this great life. Pursue impossible things–for we are promised that nothing is impossible.
Believe. Touch the stars. Dare. Because there’s nothing that you can’t do.–CK