I just attended my 20th career graduation. Twenty years of ‘cap tossing’ and school bands playing ‘Pomp and Circumstance’. You would think after 20 of these long programs I would be a bit over it, however, I am not. Instead, I am motivated. I fact I still cry at each of them.
I am writing this on the last day of school for teachers. In just a few hours will get on a bus and will have completed yet another fun year. My desk is clean. My chairs are stacked. I am ready for vacation and already anticipating another fun year in Costa Rica. Just like every year, the final day is a bit bitter sweet.
If there is anything I have learned in my 20 graduations it is that every year has been completely different. Some things stay the same; staff meetings, grading papers, lesson plans, and even falling up the stairs once in a while. But every year is also full of its own unique laughter, tears, student smiles, global issues, and mistakes. It has been a joy to have met and spent time with nearly 8,000 incredible people. I have always said that teenagers are the most incredible people on the planet, and I have been privileged to spend a few short months with these incredible people. What an honor it has been!
What now? I look forward to another 20 graduations. I have chosen a life where I will ‘follow the east winds’ and go where I am needed most. I have 8,000 more incredible people to meet, teach, and love. Many have not even been born yet.
Graduation each year is the joy that reminds me how completely incredible it is to be a teacher.