Yesterday I waited two hours to take a ten second walk across a stage. It was my graduation ceremony and that’s what you do for your graduation ceremony. You sit on small metal chairs, listen to speeches, and clap for your friends. Afterwards, you give everyone hugs.
The ceremony felt like the period at the end of a sentence. I had finished my bachelor’s degree and it was time to leave the nest. I still have no long term plans, but after graduating I feel better about having no long term plans. Either that or my head has inflated three sizes too large from all the congratulations I received. Something will come along to deflate it again. Another literary magazine will reject me, or I’ll forget to put the top down on the hot tub. I only hope it doesn’t happen too soon
We had a good speaker for graduation, Representative David Kilmer. He gave us some worthwhile advice and he didn’t use a monotone. Monotones at graduation are the kiss of death. He put a lot of movie references in his speech and told us to take part in civic engagement. His words of wisdom boiled down to not trusting anyone named Draco Malfoy and remembering to vote. Voting is important. If we don’t vote, we may end up with a government run entirely by crazy people, and not nice, funny crazy people, mean crazy people.
So far, I believe I’ve done well with that. I’ve been engaged. I work for Forcechange.com, writing petitions for environmental causes. One of my petitions received 558 signatures. I’m trying to build a writing career and 558 people reading something I wrote is amazing to me. Leaving University of Puget Sound has been like taking off in a plane when there’s turbulence. It’s a bit bumpy, but eventually it will smooth out and someone will offer me a beverage.
I’m grateful for the education I’ve received at University of Puget Sound, but now it’s time to take the next step. It’s time to start a new sentence.