We are at the end of one chapter of our lives. Our son graduated last year and now our daughter graduates tomorrow, June 14 2014. Every time I think about it I end up in tears, not necessarily sad tears, I think they are a mixture of emotions. From where we started to where we are now I thought things would have never been the way they are now. I have always carried my faith and beliefs along with me. Teaching my children what life means to me and to always be grateful for what you have. Giving where you can and loving when it’s hard. Life to me has definitely had its challenges. I played the cards I was dealt even if I could have taken that deck back and gotten another, I didn’t. I felt like I was doing the right thing for me at the time or right thing for my family. I keep on keeping on. Nothing will ever be perfect. I have tried to love even when I shouldn’t have. I have given love to people who didn’t deserve it and given me when I shouldn’t have. But in the end it’s about the lessons learned. You take those mistakes and put them in a jar not to hold on to the past to make them remind you of where you have been, how you got through those mistakes and why you don’t want to make them again. The emotions you feel for each mistake keep them relevant and constant reminder of why you don’t want to repeat that mistake. But this is me and how I have learned to deal with the mistakes I have made and how I remind myself not to make them again. Maybe you do it similar or maybe not but we all have a certain method. If we don’t learn from them it’s like a broken record that will never stop playing….over and over and over again. So when are you going to change out that broken record and replace it with one that may not be new but its not stopping the song from playing til the end.

Now. Breathe. I am not exactly ready to watch my daughter walk across that stage. In one hand it’s a moment that I will sing to the loved ones above who will definitely be there watching over. On the other…well it’s the part of me that doesn’t want to see my baby grow up. You want that time back when she would just cry for mommy. But to see the flower bloom that you have grown for years is beautiful. You want to let it shine like the bat symbol. To alert the world of the young woman she has become. I remember when I was her age and had already been raped at that point. Already been in the mental hospital trying to find a way out of the pain. Then getting ready to feel new kind of pain by the biological father of my children. I want nothing more out of life than to make sure she doesn’t walk down that same path. Yes I want her to make mistakes, but not the life I have had to deal with. She has seen so much hurt in her years. She has seen what evil will can do.

But after all that…we still smile. She have still learned to find the sun on a stormy day. The life in a field of nothing. The heart in a world of hate. We all have things that just make our heart skip a beat. Now that she is graduating high school and then going off to college she will learn to find life on her own. She has always had family. Now it’s her turn. I shed tears of joy and feel like I am about to somehow lose apart of me to the world. But I also know that the world is about to gain one magnificent human being. One who has given so much of her heart already and has so much more to give. About to be apart of a different family, family of her college roommate and others she interacts with while at college. She is about to show the college what she brought to the table during her high school career and how her touch changed so many things along the way. How she influenced some adults to teach others what it means to say yes mam, no mam, yes sir, no sir. And she is only 18 years old.

I wonder how my mother felt when I graduated. I quit high school in my junior year. I had left home and ended up taking care of a heroin addicts daughter (along with my boyfriend). I quit school to work a full time job. That boyfriend ended up going to jail because of the crimes he had done years before. Eventually I went back home and went back to school. I fought hard to graduate with my class. I didn’t get to walk across the stage with my class in June. I had to do it in August with people who had to take a class or classes during summer school in order to graduate that year. But I still graduated. That’s been one reason why I have been so hard on my daughter to stay in school and to get good grades. To achieve. To have goals, hit those goals and make new ones. I expected a lot of her in school. I could have been easier at times but I wasn’t. I know life won’t be that easy so she had to learn how to take it even when she wanted to throw in the towel. Now …go and make your life your own.

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