Firstborn’s Grad: How Did We Get Here So Soon?

On a night in May, an ordinary night

with extraordinary meaning,

my oldest son walked across a stage with his class

while we all clapped, hard.

Photo Credit: Visualore Media

What I want to know is,

How did he get from here

to here?

At the time it seemed like childhood would last forever…

but look at his parents shrinking.

Photo Credit: Visualore Media
Photo Credit: Visualore Media

The eleven young people who graduated that night

are a solid set of kids. I respect them,

and hearing their speeches and what they care about was a joy.

Photo Credit: Visualore Media

I found it splendid to be honored as a parent but

not one of the central players,

helping to plan and decorate

yet not being primarily responsible.

The seniors suggested a simple menu dressed up pretty:

cupcakes, mini cheeseballs, crackers, seasoned pretzels, grapes.

Our family hosted an open house for more local friends the next day.

Aarick is loved by a lot of people,

and their gifts and words to him were big.

Two special gifts came from his grandparents –

a handmade quilt, “Grandmother’s Fan,” from the Zook side,

and an engraved leather study Bible from the Coblentz side.

Treasures to keep.

He’s headed to Penn State Behrend in the fall,

in computer science / software engineering.

Photo Credit: Visualore Media

I felt like I felt at his baptism,

watching him walk both toward and away,

and being overwhelmed with joy.

Photo Credit: Visualore Media

Here’s to his future!

And the delight of being part of it.

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1 year ago

I have not been the parent but I have been the student and the sibling of the student and you said it so well Shari! A chapter is closing but the next one can be equally good.

1 year ago

Congratulations Aarick!
This is special and beautifully documented. I have pictures of my oldest two on graduation evening but didn’t get pictures at our firstborn son’s grad. (Sort of a long story) ????
Anyway. Many blessings to the parents and the son as you set sail on the next leg of the journey. It’s an adventure in a different kind of good way.

1 year ago

Very beautifully written!

Louella Martin
1 year ago

I feel equal parts joy and sorrow reading posts like this. I want to hold and bottle my young children forever and ever and at the same time joy in seeing them grow and mature and stretch out.
Nobody told me the immense dichotomies that come with motherhood and I wouldn’t have understood had they tried.

1 year ago

What a great milestone for Aarick, and for his parents. Congratulations!

Nice cake. ????????

1 year ago

Rejoicing with you at this very special time in your life with Aarick. Young men of vigor and valor are such a blessing!

Shaunda Stoltzfus
1 year ago

What a beautiful recollection of this event!!

I feel like I should have many things to say but really all I am thinking right now is that this group of graduates gives me hope and joy for the future.

1 year ago

I like the pictures and especially the big smile of your son.
My oldest is 7 and is in grade 1. I am still thinking that this will last forever but when I see your photos I know deep in my heart that time passes so quickly…

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