Thursday, May 22, 2008

then and now

I couldn't decide what to wear last night, but in the end it didn't really matter. The evening wasn't about me, or us - it was about our kids.
Last night our little girl graduated from high school.

Not so much a little girl anymore, eh?! The trouble is, she's quite short (sorry, Sweetie, but you are!) so she still feels like a little girl when she's mooching around the house. But last night she was all dressed up and made up and suddenly she and her friends all looked like adults.

It was weird how many memories the ceremony brought back. The youngsters were so boisterous, full of heckling and clapping and wolf-whistles, and generally being rowdy 18-year-olds.
You remember being there, don't you? I know I do; like it was yesterday.

There were some lovely moments: one of the girls read a poem she wrote about this time in their lives - talented young lady, I have to say. There was a 'ceremony of light' where some lovely things were said.
And then there was the headmaster's address... the man had lots to say, I gotta tellya. Some of it was pretty insightful but I couldn't help wondering if he couldn't have said some of it during the 6 years the kids were in his school, instead of saving it until then. The audience got awfully fidgety towards the end; the kids had their certificates and they wanted to go party!

And, of course, there was the "I know you don't think so now but one day you'll back on your school days and wish you were back there, because they are the best time of your life" speech.
We all heard it.
Some of us believed it.
I didn't.
If attendance at my Valedictory Service hadn't been mandatory, I wouldn't even have gone, and when it was finished I walked out with a huge grin on my face because I was done with school.
I said then that I would never miss school, that I would never wish I was back there.
It turns out I was right.
So kids, don't believe everything your headmaster says.

Now my days at College, well that's a different story entirely...!


kyknoord said...

If I could remember anything about school, I might be able to offer an opinion. Concussion is a wonderful thing.

mississippilinda said...

Congratulations to your lil girl!!

I do not miss school and it gives me the shivers just thinking if I had to go back!!!

Terri said...

Kyknoord - Concussion? Would that it were that easy...!

Linda - We're kindred spirits, you and I :-)

Rose said...

Hey Terri congratulations, Em is only starting school in September which means at least 12 pain staking years before her Debs. Glad to see you are back in the land of the leprechauns, did you enjoy your holiday? ... do tell!

LiVEwiRe said...

I'll reserve comment on school but experiencing that huge turning point for her must've been something else! Congrats to her! Everyone walks away with an entirely different experience, odd.

laurie said...

oh, my. congratulations to her! and to you, for surviving her school years....

did you cry?

Terri said...

Rose - those 12 years will pass in no time, trust me; start saving now for the dress ;-) The holiday was great, I will tell you guys all about it real soon!

LiVEwiRe - Indeed they do; much like life, eh? It's all in the eye of the beholder. Or something. Although I think external factors have a greater impact on us during our school years than at any other time in our lives. That's my theory, anyway. I can't help thinking that if I hadn't been switched at birth, and had grown up in my castle like I was supposed to, with private lessons and Swiss finishing schools and stuff, I would have left with an entirely different view of things. Also, I probably wouldn't use the word 'stuff' quite so often.

Laurie - I almost cried, but not quite, hehe! So was Cinderella when I hugged her tight before she left and told her congratulations. She's not much of a huggy-emotional girl; more like a streetwise smart-alec, like her Dad. But she hugged back so I think she appreciated it. But yeah, the maternal feelings I had were a little unexpected.

angel said...

congrats on the graduation, thats wonderful!
i missed matric at school coz i got pregnant with damien the year before...
i did enjoy school though- my friends were there and my boyfriend(s) was there and i generally had a good time. life was easy!

Katt said...

I'm trying very hard to remember my high school valedictory service... and I can't. I can remember my primary school one pretty well... kinda like those grandmas and grandpas who can't remember who visited them last week but they can remember going on holiday to the sea when they were four.