When my oldest graduated, I bawled like a baby. Her years of hard work all coalesced into a perfect moment of achievement the moment they called her name. Or the name close to hers. Yes, they messed up her name. But we were able to laugh about it.
MacDougal was going to graduate without much effort on my part. I mean, Lord knows, he worked hard all those years; but I never had to do much to help him. I was just a cheerleader on the side of his school career. But just before he graduated he got very sick. He nearly died. He had surgery upon surgery. And in the middle of it all was graduation. In a last minute reprieve, the doctor sprung him out of the hospital in the morning so he could attend. He ‘walked’ in a wheelchair. I was once again moved to tears.
I figured by the time I got to the third, I would be an old pro. She kept asking if I would cry, she actually seemed obsessed with my reaction to ‘my baby’ graduating and my emotional reaction. I worried. I didn’t feel like I was going to cry. I mean, yes I was proud and filled with joy, but it seemed inevitable and I didn’t think I would cry.
I was slightly mistaken. I didn’t even make it past the procession. Pomp and Circumstance boomed out of the speaker, Bear was sixth in line and I lost it. I simply couldn’t stop the flow of tears. Then some lovely young girl with a beautiful voice and some serious guitar skills performed and the waterworks began again. At that point, I figured the grandkids on either side of me might drown. I managed to curb the flood eventually. Until they started calling the names of all the graduates. Since we moved here only ten years ago, I didn’t know many of the kids in my other two’s graduating class. Except for their friends, they were virtually unknown to me. Bear’s class was full of names I knew. The would announce one and I would scream to Mr. Vixen, “Oh, I taught her in 2nd grade CCD.” “He was in my 5th grade class.” “His mom helped me when Bear was in 6th grade.” “She was in my girl scout troop.” And on and on. It was like being surrogate mother to 779 kids! I attended that high school, as a parent, for 12 years! I felt more at a loss than I am sure any of my kids ever did.
So another chapter in my life closes. High school is done. I will miss the football games, shadow a student day, the proms, and even the drama.
Maybe I should adopt.
Congratulations Bear. We are so proud and lucky to have you as our daughter!