It is the graduation that seemed so very far away when you were all little. The days were long, but the years have been short, and here we are your graduation day.
We have watched so many of you grow from babies in kindergarten to the amazing young adults you have become. And everyone of you is destined for a great adventure: your future.
We are so proud of all the achievements you have made so far and you are all just getting started. We as parents look forward to all that is yet to come.
And to the parents, all the yelling, threatening and ultimatums have finally gotten us to this point.
The schools have taught them the ABCs and 123s and we have all tried to instill values and pride into our children in the hopes they finish this chapter of childhood with feelings of being loved, having self-worth and the confidence to go onto the next part of their lives.
And we as parents of grads are going through a graduation of our own. The memories of that first day of kindergarten are fresh in our minds.
On that particular day, we didn’t want to send you away from us because you were going to face the world on your own. Now that you are graduating we are nervous once again, letting our children go on towards their futures, knowing we have given them the tools to do it, and yet, still feeling a loss of their childhood.
But one thing remains: deep down we know you will emerge victorious and make us proud.
As children they danced on every nerve, as young teens they found a way to make those days look like a walk in the park, but through it all was our love and wishes for the very best for them in this world.
As parents it is hard for us to watch you grads move on to your future. We still see our beautiful little kindergarten children dressed in grad hats that are 10 sizes too big. Please know in your hearts that we are always here for you.
For those of you moving away soon to go on to further your education or start an exciting new life for yourselves, please remember your parents and phone us often so we can follow along your journey, not just because you ran out of money.
I have always said your generation is exceptional and will change this world for the better. So, do epic things; no pressure, but our world really needs you now.
So reach for the stars. You may not reach one, but the journey and the challenges will be your own reward.
I’d like to end today with a line from a great show: The Wonder Years.
Growing up happens in a heartbeat. One day you’re in diapers, the next day you’re gone, But the memories of childhood stay with you for the long haul. I remember a place, a town, a house like a lot of other houses, a yard like a lot of other yards, on a street like a lot of other streets, and after all these years, I still look back with wonder.
Grads, never forget where you came from. We have given you roots; now we give you wings.
Brenda Small and Sue Carter, on behalf of the parents.