Thursday night I had prepared myself for Jake’s graduation by packing 38 tissues in my purse. If tears were going to flow I was going to be ready. After eating dinner at 4:30 p.m.,to keep Jake’s blood sugar levels from going too low during the long ceremony, the cast of characters were ready to drive in rush hour traffic to the Cintas Center at Xavier University.
As we wove our way through traffic, with my former Secret Service husband trained in evasive driving procedures (think white knuckles for person in the passenger seat)at the wheel, I lost myself in the thoughts of Jake’s years in high school. OK, maybe I even went back as far as the day they laid him in my arms for the first time at the adoption agency. We approached the Cintas Center with time to spare and had only one more road to turn on when…. WHOMP!!!!! we were rear-ended and pushed into the car in front of us. I guess this is what is referred to as a “3 car pile-up.” April screamed, I came back out of lala land and the Hunk hopped out of the car to survey the damages. While I calmed down everyone in the car Jim and the other 2 drivers decided there was no discernible damages. All 3 carloads of people were headed to the graduation and no one wanted to exchange insurance information for fear of being late. We found a great parking spot in the lot the farthest away from the Cintas Center so after the ceremony we would be one of the first cars to leave.
hiking walking to the Cintas Center Jake greeted friends and then I took him all the way around the Center to the graduates only entrance while the Hunk went in the main entrance to scope out the seats. We knew that Jake would be sitting in almost the last row on the right side and he was lucky enough to find seats right in front of some very good friends of ours. Our darling daughter joined us.
I took out my 37 tissues, I had used one to wipe the sweat of my brow after the car incidence, and settled into the comfy chair waiting for the ceremony to begin. I also kept swiveling my head around to watch for our friend Liz. Darling Liz was caught in traffic and joined us a little bit late. Sorry Liz no photo-op for you.
Jake is standing with the choir on the first row, far left, preparing to sing the Senior Farewell Song. I had heard this before during his high school concert so it only required 1/2 of tissue 36. The other half I used for the Star Spangled Banner.
Here are some of the 431 graduates. We listened to speeches and then listened to 422 names called before they got to the most important name of the night.The last thing a Senior does for school is line up one more time.Here is the big moment captured on the Jumbotron. It was when Jake received his diploma that I put my tissues away. I wasn’t going to need the other 35 tissues because I had just listened to over 400 names being called and way to many speeches. I was beyond tears and just wanted to get out of there and celebrate his accomplishment. The ceremony was over and our group agreed upon a meeting spot. I would go around to the other side of the building(outside) to retrieve Jake. The graduates weren’t allowed to come into the main building and we weren’t allowed to go through the building to get them. I was wondering why it was taking the 2,000 plus people so long to get out of the building. When I got to the front I realized the back-up was because of the thunder-storm taking place. The rain was a deluge. Surely it would let up soon…………not. I knew that program would come in handy as I covered my head and ran around the side of the building to find Jake. Forget the meeting spot I just hoped the Hunk would go to the car because I didn’t have a key to get in if he wasn’t there. Jake did not want to go into the storm with the rain pouring down and lighting flashing overhead. I knew that mortar board would come in handy. “Put it on your head Jake and run. Don’t touch those metal hand rails on the stairs it’s lightning,” I screamed over the roar of the thunder. What idiot suggested we park in the far lot. Oh right, I was that idiot. We ran and ran and ran some more to reach the car. My hero had pulled it up 3 rows closer. By this time there was no traffic to fight and no big sister and Liz to celebrate. They were on their own trying to get to their cars. We were too wet to go out for ice cream. Those remaining 35 tissues did come in handy to dry off our wet bodies.
Like I said in the title of this post….Pomp and “Circumstances”.