As a parent of a senior at Gardendale High School, I have similar feelings that all parents of seniors have. We are left wondering how it all went so fast. They were just in kindergarten and now they are grown and about to walk across the stage to graduate high school and then off to live on their own, without us!
We won’t see them every day?
To the seniors, this dad has a few suggestions for you. No eye rolling, please. This isn’t about college or success or any of that.
This is about what I can tell you about what you may find important 30 years from now and what you still have time to do before you graduate in about 3 weeks.
None of this will seem important when you read it. None of it may even seem important 5 or 10 years from now, but 20 or 30 years from now it will.
30 years from now, as your son or daughter is 3 weeks from graduating, you will reflect and find yourself thinking about your own experience when you were the exact same age.
Here it goes, seniors…
Don’t be so quick to bound out of the school building each day to get to your car. For the next 20 days, you own Gardendale High School. It’s your school, you are a “senior.”
People will say that it will always be your school and that you will be an alum. That’s right, of course, but it will never be the same after you graduate. Right now you rule the building. You get special treatment as a senior. You will never be in this position again.
Take advantage of that. Walk a little slower through the halls and notice everything you may not have taken the time to notice before.
Always wondered what is behind a door? Open it.
Never took the time to look in every classroom? Do it.
Take in everything in GHS with the eye of someone who wants to remember everything later on.
Don’t breeze past classmates on your way down the hall these last 3 weeks, because you have seen them a thousand times. Stop and make eye contact and smile and talk to them. You may never see them again.
That’s hard to write because none of us that have been in your shoes believed that. But it’s true.
You may never talk to or see them again, but they were part of one of the most important times in your life. Believe it or not, you share a bond that only those in your class will ever really share.
Talk to people that made an impact on you and tell them. Coaches, teachers, and classmates. You may never get the opportunity again. This is your chance.
Invite a few of your good friends to lunch or dinner or to just hang out and talk about everything you have experienced from kindergarten to where you are now.
Your parents probably have tons of photos to show everyone…this time, let them. And look at them and smile and laugh and remember.
There is a bond there.
The things I just mentioned will seem weird and unimportant to you now.
They won’t in 30 years. You won’t regret doing them, I promise.