When your child crosses that stage to get his/her high school diploma, you are graduating too. You may not be wearing the cap and gown but Lord knows you should be the one accepting that scroll instead of them!
We all know the truth: nights fighting 101 degree fevers, days spent watching them play sports in 100 degree weather, moments when your own temperature rose at their latest and greatest mistake. And here you are!
Yes mom and dad (or just mom/just dad), you too are commencing on a new life. Just as surely as your “baby” embarks on his new life, it is time for you to start on yours. Yes you will cry, and lying to yourself and others about that won’t make it any better. Yes you will go through withdrawals, as the daily routines are no more. Graduation for them means the beginning and for you the end. Or does it?
With all this new found time you have, it would be robbery to just spend it worrying about a grown child. Yes, they are still your baby but they are your “adult” baby. So set down the excuses and get to living a graduated life.
*Get out there and run! Okay, let’s walk first to avoid the shock. Start being nicer to your physique. Your child is an adult now. Carrying most of those child birth battle scars won’t hold it’s weight much longer. Yes Mama Tiger, you earned those stripes but it doesn’t mean you don’t get to keep them all.
*Meet new people. The soccer mom’s club is no more, wonder what the conversations are going to be like now? There is a whole new world out there with people who talk about other things besides their children. Books, movies, art galleries, food and music fests, traveling, the sky has no limits.
*Pick up a new habit. If procrastination was your thing (and you used your child as a cop out) try to do better. Maybe you are great at putting the needs of others first. A new thought pattern can mean thinking of yourself first. Imagine that!
*Start lobbying your hobby. You were the one who decorated for all the kiddie parties. How’s about you start hosting grown folks events and make some cash over it. Just Barney centerpieces at a retirement please.
*Don’t feel guilty about any of this. Remember when you caught the first Greyhound bus smoking out of town for college? Or the day you said “deuces” and got your own place? Well your kid is about to do that in a few weeks with nary a glance backwards. Once they are off to their new life, the heart strings become longer and longer. They will feel better knowing their parents are off living a fulfilling life.
Have a hard cry. In fact have several of them. Call friends to come hold your hands as you flip through the baby pictures. Once you get to the end of the album close it shut and start making new memories for yourself. Happy Graduation Day mom and dad!