Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Graduation Daydream

In what has now become an annual tradition on LoG, it's time to repost my graduation daydream. Several years ago now, I was subbing a class on the last day of school... Actually, I think I told that story better the first time.

Anyway, this is the daydream I had, and I think it's apropos for this time of year...

It starts with a stage filled with teens in caps and gowns. A graduation ceremony. The new graduates look over the audience filled with proud parents. They're excited. They've finally finished school, and they're looking forward to the next phase of their lives.

The new graduates exit at the side of the stage. They hug each other. Many are in tears. They meet up with parents, take pictures, and gradually leave the area.

The stage is empty, but not for long.

Off to the other side of the stage is another group of students a year younger than those who just exited. They climb the stairs and claim the stage for themselves.

The new senior class surveys its domain. Some look in corners. Others go to the edge of the stage and peer out at the audience. Many are cheering, fist pumping, and bouncing up and down. Two boys run at each other and bump chests. They have arrived.

While the new senior class celebrates, the area just off the stage that was just vacated starts to fill. This group looks around in awe and wonder. A few look up the steps, itching to join the new seniors. Several look out over the line that stretches out behind them. It's a long line and it seems to disappear into the horizon.

As each group moves up to the next position, they look over their new surroundings. The new freshman class, however, is so busy celebrating and laughing at the group just below them that they don't notice how trashed their new position is. Then again, their old spot in the line wasn't much better.

The newest middle schoolers carefully take up their new position. They are all wide-eyed wonder. The more adventurous pull their peers along. They take their time looking around, acclimating to their new position in line. There's a demarcation behind them, and they thought they'd never get beyond that border. Now that they are, they're not sure what they're going to do next.

Each elementary grade moves up one. As the former kindergartners take their first grade spot (and make themselves right at home), an empty spot is left at the end of the line. But like all the other spots in line, this one doesn't remain empty for long.

Off in the distance, family groups start to arrive. The parents push their little ones into their spot in line. Some of these children run to take over their spot. Others cling. The families stand there, watching their little ones for some time, not sure what to do next.

One mother shakes her head as she watches her little one acclimate to the line. "They grow up so fast," she says.

Nearby, various people are on their way out of the area. One woman hears the kindergartner's mother, so she turns to her and says, "You have no idea." The woman looks off into the distance where her graduate is off with friends.

"You have no idea," the woman repeats.

School ended for us last week. How's your summer going?

15 comments:

  1. An imaginative concept. So true. A Life Line.

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  2. Beautifully written! You've captured how fleeting life is. It seems like not so long ago I was walking across that stage and in just a few years, we'll be watching my stepdaughter in her cap and gown. In some ways, it makes me glad I didn't have kids myself because it would be so tough to send them out into the world and hope for the best!

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  3. That's a bit sad really Liz. The last two of my five graduated last year. They played the Birds of Tokyo song, "Lanterns", at the ceremonies and I can't hear that song now without crying. Beautifully written :)

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    1. It's the circle of life, really.

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  4. It's so crazy how quickly it all goes. My oldest will be graduating in a year (granted, 4 years early, but still...) and it's mind boggling. Life is like that, eh? You blink and years have elapsed.

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  5. While young people seem to be growing very fast, I sometimes feel as if I remained the same every year..., though in fact, I must be getting older in the eyes of the others...
    Happy summer!

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    1. I know. We all stay the same age. It's those around us that grow older.

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  6. That's a unique but accurate way to look at it. I don't have kids, but I can vaguely remember going through those spots myself.

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  7. Your dream sounds wonderful and sad at the same time. One often wonders what happens to the kids who graduate. Some go on and make big names for themselves and others have families and others, well, don't do so well. I have a vague memory of my grade and high school graduation. You captured it well

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  8. Very nicely written; I was right along with them as the groups kept moving up, finding their place, moving on. It does go by so incredibly fast. It seemed once we got to January, the rest of the school year would just fly. I hope you have a restful summer. My kids are long gone from school days so summer doesn't have the same relevance as it did when they were younger, but so far summer is going good :)

    betty

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  9. Well written dream, Liz, and so true: they do grow up so fast. But we have the memories and the results (hopefully) of all the hard word.
    Summer's going well so far. Hope yours is off to a good start.

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    1. Glad you're having a good summer.

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  10. Wow, what a poignant dream. And it is so true, they grow way too fast. They are always ready for the next stage of life while their parents want to hold on to their childhood a little longer. Thanks for sharing!

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