The Class of 2010!  

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Last night I had the honor of witnessing my nephew graduate from High School. I consider it an honor because in this new world we live in, sometimes family isn't thought of first when it comes to these activities. My nephew saw fit to make sure that my wife and I as well as my 3 sons had tickets to attend.

We listened to the speakers come and go, offering up their take on this graduating class. We were reminded of how much they have grown over their 4 years at high school. The names were called, the diplomas given, and all the friends and family rushed onto the stadium grass (actually astro-turf) to find their son/daughter, sister/brother, friend, relative, and sometimes neighborhood kid who didn't have any family attend. It was quite remarkable to watch the looks on these young adults faces. They didn't show worry over the current state of things, they showed hope, excitement, and determination. It gave me a good feeling to recognize those ambitious qualities in the next graduating class.

I realize that this is merely their first true hurdle. The way things have changed now, you can't get by very often with just a high school education. Some higher learning is required to compete in the business arena in today's world. My nephew is planning on college and for that I'm extremely happy. He realized early on that a college education is necessary.

It all leads me to wonder about my children as they move through school. I have one graduating next year. He wants to be a chef. I am more than happy about that (I love my pasta). I also understand that culinary school is not some fly by night course that you can complete in a week. It's expensive, and it's involved. I have tried to impress that upon his young mind, and I think that most of the time, he understands. It's been his dream since he was about 6 years old, and I'm going to do what I can to see it come true for him.

My younger ones don't speak too much about after high school yet. My middle son is going into 7th grade and he is excited if a bit nervous. My youngest is still in grammar school and has a good deal of time to figure it out (they don't make you give career choices in 4th grade....yet). Regardless of what they decide, I believe that they will make more good choices than bad. They will learn to live with those choices and be stronger because of them.

I watched that in my nephew. He has made his fair share of bad decisions, and he has paid the price for some of them, but he never tried to put them off on anyone else. He owned those mistakes and wore them like a badge of honor. He is truly growing up because he has taken the good and the bad and saw only what needed to be done, not what could have been done, or should have been done. He is finally able to understand that it's not what you could have done that matters, but what you are doing. The plan is laid out in his head and he is following it. No excuses, no complaining, just determined.

I see these young people starting out their lives and I have a renewed feeling.....

It feels like hope...

Congratulations Ryan.....You are a great young man, and I know you are going to do great things with your life. It's men like you that inspire hope in men like me.....

This entry was posted at Thursday, June 10, 2010 and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

4 comments

You are so right, graduating from HS is a major turn of the page. A million different roads to take.
We have five kids and witnessed what you described five times. It's a great day, that's for sure!

Great thoughtful post!

June 10, 2010 at 9:26 PM

Congrats to the nephew.

June 11, 2010 at 2:56 AM

I think it is so great that your son has discovered his passion very early in life, good for him!
I am still trying to discern MY passion, but I doubt I will be able to find it out in the few years I have left before I plan in retiring.

June 11, 2010 at 5:22 AM

And Bendigo, it's men like you that inspire young men like him..Congrats on his graduation and I hope that his future will be awesome!

June 12, 2010 at 6:38 AM

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