So, it’s that time of the year again when everyone is sharing their joys and posting pictures of their kids graduation. I won’t be participating in the crazy preparations for graduation this year. My oldest is graduating high school, but he doesn’t want to walk down the aisle with his classmates. Shocking I know!
When I first heard the news, I was devastated. I thought to myself,
Am I going to be the only parent without graduation pictures?
The only parent not sitting in the crowd, waiting for their child’s name to be called?
What what others think of me?
Will they think of me as a bad parent for not forcing him to follow through with the ceremony?
What will my husband’s family think?
And that’s when it dawns on me, pushing him to do this graduation walk, that I was so gung ho for, is really about my ego, not about him graduating. I was too busy thinking about what others way say about me and my parenting skills, that I was forget the huge accomplishment that my son had made. I wanted to show off like other parents, but maybe it’s for all the wrong reasons.
I had to say myself, “Kesha, I know you want to sit there and sob “that’s my baby!” and scream out his name with he is called to the stage, but is it going to be worth it if he hates the entire experience? He’s the one who would have to wear the cap and gown, sit for hours, and do the walk, not you.”
I realized my issues were a result of me trying to feed my ego, and please others. Instead of being happy with that fact that my son graduated from high school. Instead of letting him be himself, and let him be his own person. I can’t be mad that I’ve raised him to speak his mind, and to make his own decision. To be honest. To do what makes him happy with himself. To express himself, and follow his own path that is pleasing to God. That’s what I have taught him over the years.
My son’s decision to not walking down the aisle does not make him any less of an educated person. It just means I don’t get a picture of him in his diploma or his cap and gowns. Something I can do myself. I won’t miss that proud feeling a parent gets when their child graduates. I feel that now, and have been all school year long!
For some, the accomplishment is in what you did to get your degree, not walking across the stage. For others, the stage moment is important, but I think it’s fair to recognize that not everyone is going to get something out of it.
I still have 3 more kids that can choose to walk down the aisle but I’m not going to pressure them, and make it seem like if they don’t do it, it’s the end of the world. I’m happy if they are happy.
- As long as they are proud of themselves when they graduate and receive a diploma.
- That they know deep down in their heart that they gave it their all.
- That they see their own worth.
- That they grow to become adults who are happy with the choices that they have made in their life.
At the end of the day, the goal of graduating high school has been met. I’m proud of my son. He has had his struggle over the years, but he managed to make it to that light at the end of the tunnel that seemed so dim for so long.
My son’s choice to not walk may not makes others happy, and I’m fine with that. He’s not here to please others, and feed their into their exceptions of what they what for HIS life. Choosing not to go to your graduation ceremony shouldn’t make you feel any less of a person, and it shouldn’t make you feel less worthy of your family and friend’s unconditional love and support.
“I did not teach my children to be like I taught then to live their truth, to love themselves, to always respect other and always reach to be respected! No matter what people day about them at the end of the day, my kids have the confidence to be who they are and THAT’s where their power lies.” Jada Pinkett Smith