Three years ago when my older son was preparing to walk across the stage at Houston’s Toyota Center, where he would graduate, I thought about what I would say to his class if I was asked to add a few words of wisdom. Of course, I wasn’t, so I published them in this blog instead.
Now it’s his younger brother’s turn to cross that same stage tomorrow afternoon. In case they need me to fill in for one of the speakers, I’ve still got that speech ready to go:
To my beloved younger son’s graduating class:
Today is a huge milestone in your lives. You are high school graduates! Even though this is a “commencement” ceremony, it’s actually a beginning for all of you. Make what you do in life count!
“Can’t” is the most-negative word in anyone’s vocabulary; don’t let it be part of yours! “Would’ve,” “should’ve,” and “could’ve” are negative traps that prevent you from moving forward with your life. It’s important to stay positive on the road to success. Make your own breaks!
Be sure to pay it forward—be thankful for what you’ve been given and what you’ve earned in life. Gratitude is the best attitude. Be grateful, not hateful.
Don’t forget the Golden Rule—do to others as you’d like done to you. If only everyone lived by this rule, we’d have no wars, no strife, no pushing and shoving in the back seat of the car by certain brothers I know.
It doesn’t matter what everyone else is doing! What matters is what you’re doing. Set a good example, be a great role model, inspire others. You know right from wrong—choose to take the right path; don’t follow someone else down the wrong road.
Tell the people in your life how you feel about them, hopefully, in a positive way. It can be too late to say “I love you,” “thanks for all you’ve done for me,” and “you’re my world.” Don’t let important words just hang in the air . . . say them.
Bask in the moment! Remember that your parents and loved ones are extremely proud of you today. This is a fulfillment of a dream, one of many in your lifetime. Enjoy it and look forward to the next one.
e.e. cummings said, “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” Be courageous! Take chances! Reach for the stars!!
Milton Berle said, “If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” Whether you build doors or knock them down, know that we believe in your ability to succeed. Best wishes to the Class of 2013. Continue to make us proud!
And to my precious #2 son, you never fail to make me proud of you. When you started kindergarten, I had tears in my eyes. When you walk across the stage tomorrow, I again will have tears in my eyes. Tears of joy, pride, and wonderment that I’ve had the pleasure of watching you grow up these past 18 years. You are a wonderful young man who will succeed because you have a great heart, sense of humor, spirit, and intelligence.
I’m the luckiest mom in the world! I love you forever and ever plus a day!!