The idea, flashing neon lights in the back of my mind, growing larger & brighter every single year.
The first few days of Kindergarten in the fall of 2007, you stood beside a sign that read Class of 2020 & it seemed as though we had a lifetime to go.
Hours of struggling over homework, days spent on a field or in a gym, tears shed over a girl or an argument with a friend, voices raised in disagreements, rules broken, nights spent worrying, dollar after dollar after dollar spent on needs and wants, memories made, traditions passed on, clothes outgrown, toys forgotten, hearts broken, mistakes made, medals earned, patches collected, friends made, friends lost, trucks driven and wrecked, futures decided, futures changed, lessons learned.
The closer we got to that finish line, the realer it got.
How did we get here so fast?
I had it all pictured in my mind. Your senior year. Celebrating wins and learning from losses. Smiling through the tears on senior night. Taking pictures on prom. Crying my eyes out as you walk across the stage. One last vacation before the reality of life makes you grow up.
Sometimes things don't happen the way we think they should.
I'm thankful for your school years. I'm thankful for the happy moments, the moments we thought couldn't possibly get worse, the moments that were captured on film, the moments that will be forever etched in our minds, the smiles, the tears, the joy, the pain, & everything in between.
I'm thankful for almost 7 months of a semi normal senior year.
Now, today, July 23, 2020, 4 months after life as we knew it changed, and 2 months after your original graduation date, I'm thankful for an ending for this journey we started 13 years ago.
I'm thankful that even though this is NOTHING like what I pictured or what anyone wanted, we have tried to make the best of it.
Class of 2020, you are destined to be world changers. You go down in history as the Covid-19 class. And while, yes, it sucks on so many levels, keep your heads up & know that every experience you go through makes you who are will become in the future.
Don't blink, your future is waiting!
I blinked. Through the tears, I blinked.