It was only 19 years ago that I was at my own graduation. I remember the excitement as the day grew near. It was the day we had all worked towards in all those years of school. This was it, our big day!
Under our purple robes, we were all dressed in our best "going to church clothes." The day started with a banquet and rehearsal. We made our way onto the football field where our families were watching from the stands. Speeches were given, music played, I cried; many of us did. My name was called, and thankfully, I didn't fall across the stage. Then, the final speech and caps were flying in the air. It was all over. The moment we had worked so long for was gone in an instant.
I don't remember any of the words spoken on that day, but I remember an overwhelming sense of accomplishment. I had completed 12 years of school, and with the last 5 months of them pregnant. I had fought to get away from my mother, endured a long 4 months at a new school, away from my fiance' and all of my old friends, in a new home with a father that I barely knew, and a Step Mom that I thought hated me, and I had made it through. I had my diploma and in less than a week I would say my vows to my husband and begin a new journey.
On Graduation day, my Speech teacher gave me a gift. It was "Hope for the Flowers," a book about a caterpillar and its journey to becoming a butterfly. On the title page he wrote:
May this graduation day fill your heart with pride, for you have never given up on yourself! I am a better person for having known you, and I thank you for sharing part of your life with me.
Every once in awhile, I take this book out and look at it to remind myself that you must struggle before you can spread your wings and fly, and along the way, you must stop to cherish every moment, and you never know who you might meet that may learn from you, just as you are learning from them.
As my daughter prepares for graduation, I hope she knows how proud I am of her and her accomplishments. I hope she stops to enjoy every moment in her journey. I hope she spreads her wings and flies. And, mostly, I hope that her own heart is full of pride, that she never gives up on herself, and that she knows that I am truly a better person for having her in my life.
♪I believe I can fly, I believe I can touch the sky♪ (R Kelly)
This is a sponsored post but the opinions expressed are my own.