I started “writing” this blog (thanks to voice to text on my cell phone) while driving back from Tallahassee yesterday. And before anyone starts accusing me of improper use of a vehicle, I promise both hands remained on the wheel and both eyes on the road the entire time.
Trust me, it was much safer than having me rocking it out at the top of my lungs to 70s and 80s music with some occasional Broadway tunes through in for good measure since I can easily get lost in the lyrics.
Anyway, I was there for a few days while my daughter was filming her senior thesis at FSU, just a few days after my son graduated from high school and less than a week after returning from the experience I shared in my previous blog about Camp Jenny.
Yeah, it has been a crazy busy time.
I had actually been thinking about this week’s blog ever since the curtain rose at Ruth Eckerd Hall last Thursday evening while “Pomp and Circumstance” was played by the high school band and 178 boys young men sat on the stage in their tuxedos (they wore the traditional cap and gown the night before at the Baccalaureate service at school)
…in perfectly lined up rows
…hands strategically placed on top of each of their thighs
…looking straight out at the filled to capacity audience comprised of family, friends and faculty (by the way, my husband did lose the bet about how filled it would get…when will he learn?)
…with the most serious of expressions on every one of their faces
So, call me crazy but… I am getting chills sitting here now thinking about it. It was such a dramatic sight. Everyone gasped and then erupted into applause and a lot of cheering.
I was there with my husband, father, sister and brother in law. And we are admittedly a somewhat cynical and sarcastic bunch (I know shocking). But that moment? Seriously, it took our breath away.
Sadly, my daughter missed it. She started production earlier that day. Truth be told, I didn’t know I should have been prepared to videotape the moment.
Well, that’s not really true.
As a parent, I should always be ready. And with the release of Periscope for Android last week, I definitely had no excuse and should have streamed it live for not only her but also for my brother and his family out in California.
That, of course, would have required me to know that Periscope for Android had been released.
I did manage to get a photo, albeit a very blurry one, of the scene and immediately sent it to my daughter. The school’s photographer, thankfully, got a much better shot that will go where all other photos go these days…into my Google Photos account hoping to make it into a to be created online album.
My son is in the second row from the top on the left, first seat off the middle aisle. Fortunately I found that out prior to the ceremony or I would have spent the entire time looking for him.
Then again, they were sitting in alphabetical order, but I probably wouldn’t have thought of that until after I spent the entire time looking for him.
Did I mention it has been a crazy busy few weeks?
To say I am proud of my son may seem like a given, however, I need to say it just the same. Yes, he graduated Cum Laude (which was revealed in the program that night and, of course, I cried) and he has been a real team player on various soccer teams for the past 14 years, but my pride goes well beyond his academic and athletic accomplishments.
Simply put, he’s a good kid. He wasn’t too happy that I had him stand outside in his tuxedo when it was 90+ degrees so we could get this photo. One day he’ll thank me or at least that is what I choose to believe.
Some may say he didn’t start out such a “good” kid at birth. He came out screaming and really didn’t stop for the first 3 or 4 years of his life. I am talking ear piercing, never ending stuff.
You know it’s bad when even the grandparents don’t want to be around.
But that screaming?
He also didn’t sleep, eat and, forgive me if it may seem like “TMI”, poop. I mean he did a little of each, but not nearly enough of what the average baby was supposed to do.
As a result, I never ate, I never slept and well the third thing…use your imagination. Suffice to say, I became slightly unhinged (by my definition) and it certainly didn’t help an already troubled marriage.
We took him to every specialist in town and while we were grateful there was nothing seriously wrong with him from a physiological standpoint…or at least not via an official diagnosis…it was, nevertheless, a very emotionally draining situation.
Come on moms with difficult children, fess up! You know you relate to this…One close friend who happens to be a pediatric development specialist told us at the time that some kids have a “kink in their hard wiring” when they are born and it just takes a few years to work it out of their system.
Ummmmm…that was all fine and wonderful to hear but going through those years???
She was, of course, right because he is now capable of sleeping until mid-afternoon, eating more than his body weight on any given day (or so it seems) and, well, again use your imagination about the third issue.
We never really know what we are going to get when we make the decision to bring a living, breathing human being into the world. I’ve had friends and family who have breezed through the childhood years while others have dealt with everything from some typical teenage rebellion and minor learning disabilities to autism, cancer, mental illness, drug and/or alcohol addiction and even the random, unexpected and extremely tragic death of their child.
So if it meant no sleeping, eating plus that third thing and ultimately going through a divorce to come out on the other side and sit in a room of almost 2000 people knowing I have a healthy, smart, well adjusted, all around good kid heading off to college in a few weeks, ok then so be it.
One final thing, I realize it is unlikely my ex-husband will read this but I still need to put it out there that I am very grateful that he provided Nathan the opportunity to attend a private high school. I do believe it has and will continue to pay off even if he insisted on sticking out his tongue in graduation pictures.
I guess boys will always be boys.
That’s it for now…#BlackerOut