Graduation weekend was a busy time. An emotional time. A time with family and friends. A time of...change.
Saturday morning, we all were up bright and early--7 a.m. We had breakfast--homemade Cinnamon rolls or peanut butter rolls. Kev and Bob then went out to start up the smoker. Kev came in shortly after, and told Andy that he needed to go to town to get some lighter fluid. My menfolk then headed outside. The rest of us went out the other door and stood on the deck, watching Andy find his new car...
He headed towards the Volvo, our family car, but Kev directed him towards the car. Andy said he saw the car, and thought that maybe Kim and Bob and their family drove it, but there was also an SUV sitting there that he couldn't place the owner of. So he was confused...then he saw the bow, and Kev said "Happy Graduation."
Those of us on the porch saw them head out towards the car. We saw Andy look, hesitate, and then we saw him grab Kev and give him a huge hug.
He was stunned. And excited. Me, I got teary.
Andy did run to town for lighter fluid. His Uncle Dan rode shotgun and Andy drove out a lot more carefully than he does in our car!
The ceremony was at Four in the afternoon. There were 4 cameras there in our group. I even took our camera, but for some reason, I couldn't focus well on the proceedings. Might have something to do with all the tears in my eyes. They kept coming and I kept fighting them off, but they'd just come back. Darn tears. After graduation, I asked each person with a camera if they'd gotten pictures, because I hadn't. Two of those cameras had no batteries. No batteries, no pictures. One other camera wasn't in a good spot for pictures. Only one person got pictures. (Thanks Dad!) Sheesh, weren't we well prepared!
There were speeches, awards, diplomas, a PowerPoint slide show (that really helped the tears...) Andy received a scholarship, which we didn't expect. The graduates honored their parents with flowers and hugs. (Andy presented bouquets to both his Grandmas...another teary moment.) The graduates threw their mortarboards in the air, and marched out of the room.
There was a small reception in the East Gym, (something else didn't know about.) Boys aren't very good with giving information to their mothers... After a few photos, and watching all these strange women hug my son, we went home for the BBQ.
I think the tears were finished...yeah, they were. WE got home, served the food, visited with all our guests and tried to relax.
You know something though, I couldn't have gotten through this without my friends. Sharon, Jody, Kelli and Kim all pitched in at some point, and cleaned up the kitchen. They loaded the dishwasher, put the leftovers in the fridge, and wiped down my counters. I hadn't even had time to think about cleaning up yet, and it was done!
Andy was very gracious and grateful for his gifts, he was happy to have everyone here and visited with everyone who chose to share this special day with him. If I hadn't already been so proud of him, I would have been then.
Most of our company left before dark. And those of us who were still here were tired. Exhausted, and emotionally drained. Well, I was!
This was one of those milestones that arrived much faster than I ever thought it would. And I was totally unprepared for my tears. I think that this event in my son's life was more of an emotional event for me than his birth or his first day of school. It marks the end of something...not parenthood, but it signifies that he's now an adult and that he will now be pursuing his goals which will be independent of Kevin and my goals. It means that he's really and truly an adult, and is someone who will have to find his own way in the world. I hope that his dad and I gave him the tools he needs to succeed.