Saturday, June 14, 2008

Ah to Arrive!

We had a friend who graduated from college today (congratulations, Dan!); we were invited to attend. It took place at the Rose Garden Arena. I haven't been to a college graduation since Zan's back in 1995. Although he has his masters, he hates the whole pomp and circumstance thing, so he didn't walk.

There were some wonderful speakers. The first I was impressed by was the young man who represented the student body. He was Ethiopian-born and has lived in the U.S. for the past 8 years. He has overcome great odds to graduate from college. What I was most impressed by was his focus on making things possible for others to succeed too. He shared a famous Ehtiopian quote. I don't remember it exactly, but it was something like, stay away from those whose knowledge stays within themselves. It was clear from his whole demeanor that that he was not one who kept all that he knew to himself. He shares all that he is daily and is genuinely concerned for those around him.

The other was the key note speaker (is that what they're called at a graduation? I don't think so, but you know what I mean, right?). His name was Richard Pimentel. He was sooo good. He started out by quoting Oliver Wendell Holmes (a relation of Zan's, btw), he said, "Alas for those who never sing, but die with their music still in them." He shared a lot on finding their music, finding a venue to use that music and finding an audience to listen. He said, "The shortest distance beween two points is illuminated by your dreams." He emphasized that everyone should walk their own path, not one laid out by someone else. He was just so good.

I've been cramming about as much information as one little, feeble brain can handle full of child development information for this psychology class I'm taking right now. I just want to get done with it. But, today, as I sat through the graduation, I realized that all of those students had probably been through a class or two that they didn't love and yet they made it. They had arrived.

I someday want to arrive too. The sad thing is that I won't get to wear the gown and get to shake someone's hand to signify that I've arrived. Sigh. That's all pomp and circumstance anyway, isn't it? I wonder if I want that just to gratify my pride.


Rachel said...

That gives me hope! I have a class right now that I don't love-- opposite of that! I have really struggled with it-- and now I have a renewed attitude that it will be worth it! I need to look at the big picture--often.

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