If you’re not in the mood for sappy accolades and nostalgia, keep scrolling…
“Every child deserves at least one adult who is irrationally crazy about them.”
This year has been coined, The Year of Sophia. Why? Because my daughter, Sophia, graduates from high school in just 4 days! The “why” is truly important and has allowed me to slow down, set boundaries and be intentional with my time. So, as different opportunities have cropped up for our family, for my business, or for each of us as individuals, the first question is: Will this interfere with any event for senior year? If so, it’s a hard “no.” Sophia deserves to be celebrated for all of her accomplishments.
I attempted to soak in these years as much as possible. I truly have tried. Friends with older children warned me that these years would fly by. And they have. Every long concert, last-minute science fair project, sports lessons, car-drives with bags of snacks, piano playing, horse riding, and friend-filled moments have all been experienced and loved. And next weekend, Sophia will graduate with honors, cords, and fanfare. Friends will visit, the family will fly in, and we will celebrate her.
But, there are parts of Sophia (and every child) that deserve much brighter lights of celebration. I want to honor, not only her accomplishments but her character. So, if I may:
Sophia – you loved school. Every facet since you started preschool, you embraced with fervor. You soaked up art, sang every day, wrote epically, studied diligently and committed yourself to the long game. Your dedication as a student portrays grit and determination.
You found yourself. Thanks to incredible teachers, mentors and providence, you have figured out who you are. You’re a leader. A friend. A boss. A writer. An artist. Driven, compassionate, funny, thoughtful, playful, empathic, and loving. Dang – you’re incredibly you.
You persisted through early years and middle school years and high school years. You’ve been curious, asked questions, advocated for yourself, looked for guidance, set boundaries and mucked through tough waters. This path has not been easy, but you’ve navigated with bravery.
You survived online school during a pandemic. It was NOT easy. There were tears and loneliness. You loved Spanish thanks to a creative teacher and loathed math because, well, math isn’t your thing. You missed friends.
You made friends. You fostered a village of friends from preschool through eighth grade, then bravely stepped into a huge high school, knowing just a few souls. And you’ve made some of the greatest friends of your lifetime thus far. Because, my sweet kid, you reflect who you surround yourself with – and you are love and light.
You’re celebrated! Your family adores you. Though he might not say it often, your brother watches you, loves you and protects you. Ryan and I cannot believe we get to be part of this journey and we count ourselves lucky to be your parents. Extended family celebrate you and applaud the beautiful young woman you’ve become.
You’ve healed. You conquered anxiety, found out what family means, claimed your name, flourished friendships, romance and taken brave steps. Healing hurt and walking through loss has been heartbreaking and heart-mending at the same time. Thank you for late night hugs, long talks and vulnerability.
Finally, you found your next step. As soon as we began the college hunt, you knew that you wanted a big school. Then you applied and you’re doing it. Go BEAVS! I cannot wait to see what this brings.
Yet, for all these reasons, sweet Sophia, this next step is bittersweet. If we, as parents, have done our job and I, as your mother, have loved you unconditionally and allowed you to marinate in my love and presence as I hope I have…then, the result is one truly, fabulous, breathtaking human being. A human being I love without limits.
From Elton John:
And you can tell everybody, this is your song.
It may be quite simply, but, now that it’s done.
I hope you don’t mind,
I hope you don’t mind,
That I put down in words…
How wonderful life is, while you’re in the world.
Keep writing your song Sophia. I’ll be the one giving the standing ovation.
Thanks, everyone for allowing me to gush about one of my most significant accomplishments. And to all the seniors graduating – I support you and celebrate you. May you find contentedness and reach for your dreams. And to the parents celebrating seniors – I see you. Great job. We did it.