Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Graduate

**Side Note -- this is my 500th blog post!  Holy Smokes!!**

This week my oldest son graduated from high school. It was an insanely proud parenting moment for me, as I'm sure it was for the 202 other kids that graduated with him.

I'm not sure I'm entirely ready for this new transition in his life; dependence to independence. I also know that I have already written a letter or two to my son about this here, but, I was writing this on Thursday morning before his commencement, so apparently I still have more to say.


I can't believe that soon I will be standing there watching you walk across a stage to be handed your high school diploma. You've worked so hard to get to this point and I'm so proud of you. You began this life as a beautiful baby boy but grew up to be a handsome young man. Today is your day to shine. I hope you know how much I love you; I can never say it enough. I'm glad that we have the mother & son relationship that is very rare and far between, and that you know you can trust me and talk to me about anything.

As you read this, you should know that words are pretty inaccurate to describe how I'm feeling right now.I see my window of influence is closing and it will soon be time for you to stand strong and make your own footprints in this world. It seems like we’ve been preparing for this day since you first learned to walk. I remember the day when you took your first steps–one, two, three, four–baby steps, and then you fell into my arms. And I scooped you up and we laughed and laughed because these were your first steps to independence. It seems we’ve been heading in that direction ever since.

The world is a tough place to live for everyone, regardless of wealth and status, and it is the people who are kind and caring of others that can make life easier and happier for the people around them. No matter what circumstances you find yourself in, never lose that wonderful part of you.

You are blessed with natural charisma. People are going to follow you once you discover the depth of your personal power. I suspect you have only scratched the surface so far. You began to feel it on stage and it has been such fun to watch you develop your glorious, funny stage presence. You have talent and charm. A potent combination.

My wish for you is that you stay grounded in the strength and vision you have and don't let insecurity or fear distract you. Stretch your intellectual muscles, open your mind and explore what kind of life and purpose you want and you'll figure it out. But stay positive always. Don't give in, as some people do, to negative judgments of others. Everyone needs your warmth and leadership, even if they can't ask for it.

And now, as the window is closing, I am fearful for what I have not taught you. There is so much to learn and much to look forward to as you begin life on your own. I hope I’ve taught you the most important lessons about life…and ethics…and morality–if not through words, through deeds.

Life is a continuous journey uphill and as you wander through the peaks and the hills and the valleys–I hope you discover wonderful things along the way.

I know you are anxious to go.

But before you set off as a young man with hopes and dreams and passions, I want you to remember that somewhere now, between an adolescent and an adult, beats the strong, steady heart of a beautiful man.

God has blessed you with a good mind, good looks and health, and a good heart. So go forward on your journey Andrew, and do good.I know that you will go far in this life, you deserve the best this world can give you and I know that you will get it. Even though today is the day I have to officially let you go to discover the world on your own, please know that I'll be with you no matter where you go and that I'll be there anytime and anywhere you may need me. You are my heart, my soul, my life, and my world. I love you very much. Thank you for the best 18 years of my life.

Congratulations on your graduation from high school Congratulations on emerging as a fine,honrable young man with such a bright future. Enjoy it with your friends.....and most of all -- be happy.

All my love;

From your over-the-top, unabashedly proud


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