A Parent's Thoughts at Graduation
by Baxter Black
Did you ever stop and think to yourself, ‘This will be the last time...’
Well, today will be the last time I’ll kiss my little girl. Tomorrow she steps into womanhood. Confident, confused, comely, coltish, curious, charming, garrulous, fierce and fearing.
Who will take care of her. Who will she love. What will she remember. What will she forget. What star will guide her.
Will she forgive herself when she can’t always live up to her own expectations. Will she choose the right way when the easy path beckons.
Will she discover the difference between pride and vanity, between courage and posing, between distance and privacy.
Will she experience the joy of the golden rule, the heartbreak of losing, the satisfaction of an anonymous kindness, the love of a child.
Will the boulders in her life make her strong or break her spirit.
How will she handle random acts of fate, accidents and blessings.
Will she need to assign blame.
Will she make messes or clean them up.
Will she find passion in her life, of the mind and heart. A burning, a
yearning, a calling, a cause, a reason to get up every day.
Will she know peace of mind, contentment, solace in her own company.
Will life be good to her.
And will she always know that no matter what happens, I will always love her. that she will carry the burden of my love even when we are separated by miles and years and harsh words and the vacuum of minutiae, even beyond life itself.
So many questions.
So, today I stand here, quietly thinking all these thoughts as I watch her whirl about in preoccupied flurry, knowing this will be the last time... She will be a woman in the blink of an eye.
And as I kiss her cheek, I can only ask, “Where did she go, this little girl of mine.”