Late posting, sorry guys. I was out late at my niece’s convocation ceremony. She graduated from high school last June but they hold the official diploma handover in November.
It was the same routine when I graduated — from the same school as it happens. It was so strange being back there after all these years.
The strangest thing of all was that it looks exactly the same. Except for a small sign flashing LED messages at the entrance to the cafeteria, it was unchanged.
It felt different though — the auditorium cozy rather than grand and intimidating, the cafeteria welcoming rather than a cesspool of self-consciousness. (You can tell how much I enjoyed those years, can’t you?)
I’ve been to other convocations where they ask everyone to save applause until all students have crossed the stage and received their diploma. Now I know why.
They didn’t this time though. And while some strutting peace-sign-flashing dudes and dudettes received cheers and wolf whistles, most of the students got a polite smattering of applause or worse yet … the sound of one hand clapping.
So I warmed up my palms and made it my mission to clap when others didn’t (drew the line at the whistling). I also nudged my sister and my husband so they caught on to what I was doing and joined in. Of course we erupted in a spontaneous cheer for my niece, but otherwise we tried to make sure everyone got a little recognition on their special day.
I couldn’t help think of my late friend’s daughter who also graduated this year. Her convocation could very well have been the same night. She’d have one very important person missing from the festivities, however.
Her mom might not have been there to cheer her on in person but I know she was most definitely there watching her cross that stage and pick up that diploma. A proud day, a proud night….