Thursday, May 21, 2015

Graduation Day is Almost Upon Us

My oldest son is graduating high school (hopefully) in 10 days.  There were more than a few moments of doubt that we would ever get to this place.  Yeah, my kid has got some issues and I have more than a few issues with school, with expectations, and with life in general.

So, it is as a parent of this type of child, and as a person who hated and did not fare all that well in school, any school, that I look at these commencement exercises as not a beautiful stepping stone, but something to be done with, preferably quickly.

First of all, the ceremony is on my birthday.  Name for me one person who wants to sit at a graduation ceremony on any day, much less their birthday. Seriously, please, tell me and I will call them up so that they can take my place.  My kid will never know.

Second of all, I received in the mail a laundry list of rules of etiquette that irritatingly took the jam out of my doughnut.  One of the bolded headlines is MARCHING INSTRUCTIONS.  Is this a class of Hitler Youth, or just, you know, regular kids?

A few tasty excerpts that really get my blood boiling are:

" you have paid for your cap and gown so you can "keep it" as a souvenir"  

Whoo, whoo, whoo!  Effing really?  How much did that cost?  WHAT THE HELL DO YOU DO WITH A GRADUATION GOWN AFTER GRADUATION?  And why is "keep it" in parentheses?  Is it because you won't "keep it"?  Your "parents" "will" in their "garage"?  

What a total waste.

" boys should wear a dress shirt and tie, dress slacks with dark socks and dark dress shoes.  Girls should wear a dress or a skirt and blouse "

a)  Great.  There goes another $150
b)  What century is this?  Why do girls have to wears skirts or dresses?  


" A professional photographer will be taking a picture of each graduate as he/she receives the diploma. (this part is inexplicably underlined)  These pictures will be available for purchase on line on a secure website. "

Meaning:  Cha ching  

I will take my own shitty pictures, thanks.

Oh, and " the ceremony will be recorded and you will be able to order a copy."

Oh, goody.  Nothing better I can think of than fast forwarding through two hours of yawn-tastic ceremony to watch three seconds of my kid NOT looking at the camera.  And I get to pay for it?  Where do I sign?!?  

One last thing:  "you will receive your diploma only if all financial obligations with the school have been cleared, and if you exhibit appropriate behavior during the entire ceremony."

I would love for them to try and tell me that my kid did not behave, so therefore, he does not get a diploma.  Nice try.  We are finally out of here, I think the kid is entitled to flip off the principal, no?  I mean, NO.  I don't want my kid to flip off the principal, but seriously?  Way to try and scare us into being good little automatons one last time.

Maybe I am just an antisocial jerk.  Maybe I just don't get it.  I mean, I get (to a point) rules.  I get (to a point) ceremony.  I just don't get why my kid can't wear sneakers.  I don't get why there is not an open bar for parents (they would clean up!) to make the ceremony more enjoyable.  And I really don't get mortarboards.  

Anyway, Happy Graduation, everyone!  ***takes a shot***


  1. wow. yeahhhh. That's tempting to thwart on every level isn't it?

  2. If Kevin's high school had etiquette rules and a dress code for graduation, we didn't get it (it's possible that Kevin got it and we never saw it, though)!

    I don't know ... I hear you, Ames, but I must say that I did enjoy sitting through Kevin's graduation ceremony last night. It was moving and bittersweet, and I'm sure I will remember it always, watching my firstborn walk across that stage and receive his (fake) diploma after such a rocky high school road for him. I dropped out of high school myself (although I later did home study and got all my credits and a diploma), so watching my son do something I never did myself - I don't know ... there was meaning in there for me.

    I do hope you leave the ceremony with some positive feelings about it. And happy early birthday. Mwah!

  3. I'm glad, Lisa! I'm sure I am exaggerating. It was mostly the list of rules that got me going. It's also been such a struggle that I feel like I can't relax until he gets across tge stage. Then, I am sure I will lose it in a puddle of relief tears!

  4. THE! Grrr. Curse my fat fingers and tiny phone keyboard!

  5. When is it? I want to hear all about it when it's over.

  6. From my Facebook status, yesterday. :)

    Hi Everyone! I am hoping that since it is my birthday, you will all indulge me a little bit and read this long status. Please?!

    I have a birthday every year and after 45 of them, they get to be kind of anticlimactic; but it is not every year that your oldest kid graduates high school.
    If you keep up with me much, you will know that I was stressing this day. I was complaining about sitting through a boring graduation on MY day. Silly, really. Mostly, I was covering up my anxiety with anger: My go-to emotion.

    Today, I sat and watched as my first-born walked across the stage to receive his diploma. He was not covered in tassels and hardware, like some of the higher-achieving kids. He did not get tumultuous applause, like some.
    He did, however have two, beaming parents in attendance. It has been long and hard fought, this journey. And no, it's not a big deal to some, like the woman behind me, who could not shut up about how "not a big deal" graduating high school was. She of many degrees, but no children. (She talked A LOT.)

    To others, it is a HUGE deal. Though many; most, in fact, will take this journey, it is no less huge because so many do it. Is life itself less of a miracle because we all live? I don't think so.

    To my oldest son, you are a miracle, just because you are you. I love you, so much. Thank you for being my kid. And thank you to Danny, for everything else.
    Big love all around.