Without even realizing it, most of us are consummate leapfroggers, so skilled we’ve become at moving from moment to moment that the humdrum just fades away, as does the pain of absence. It can happen at any time, of course. But for all of us who are brave enough to send people we love away: to camp, to school, to far away places, it’s how we cope. We transform ourselves into Time Lords in a sense, leaping from moment of happiness to moment of happiness when we’re together again. And here we are. Together again. And happy.
It makes good sense that school graduations should happen in the spring, a time when everyone feels the thrill of newness and possibility. Because, of course, graduation is not an end at all, but a joyous and celebratory marker in time. We have leapfrogged here and we try so hard to linger, to balance, to stay for as long as possible before we reluctantly tack this moment into the scrapbook of memory.
It’s a thrill to look out over the sea of mortarboards, to consider the mysterious cowls, velvet tams, colored tassels and cords, to wonder solemnly at the decorous, yet brilliantly colored, doctoral gowns.
These ceremonies, rife with pomp and circumstance, studded with brass quintets, soaring soloists, and nervous keynotes, shake with the right, diploma with the left again and again and again. The applause goes on for hours but even so it doesn’t seem to be enough. It’s not.
Here’s a secret: greedy little thing that I am I always stay through every credit at the movies. This is partly to show my respect to all the behind the scenes people who work so hard to make it all happen. But I also stay because there is always the chance that the actual ending of the picture might not happen until after the credits roll. Special treat when I’m right but even when there’s no little winking twist at the end of the end of the movie in my mind it’s not really over. There are still so many possibilities to every story. So is with graduates and graduations: the story continues, rife with possibility and promise. Congratulations then to all of them and to all who support and love them. Leap on everyone to your next moments of happiness!