Oh, the exuberant feeling of graduation! We think about excited faces, trying to remain poised and proud, trekking down aisles in an orderly fashion to take their assigned seats, while having reached this summit of learning with a sigh of relief. Whether you have graduated from kindergarten, elementary school, or middle school, or maybe you are now graduating from high school, trade school, undergrad, graduate, specialized degrees or doctoral programs, graduation day signifies a level of great achievement. Who can possibly argue with that?
I remember the day of my high school, Bachelor’s and Master’s degree graduations. The feeling was a proud moment of triumph in my life each time. Once you come down from that incredible high, you realize that the buck does not end there, because reality sets in quicker than you can imagine.
While we primarily associate commencement exercises with graduating from school or college, our education does not end with a diploma, certificate of achievement or degree. Nah! Continued learning is a lifetime full of interesting lessons, the good and unpleasant that tests literally every fiber of our being.
I remember wanting to grow up so badly, to be an independent adult, yet the thought never occurred to me that graduating to the adult level came with even greater lessons, responsibilities, and challenges. I’m sure you too can share some “You ain’t gonna believe this” occurrences that threw you off balance many a day, more than you probably care to admit. Yet, we share those graduation moments where we overcame some challenging hurdles that now shape our character and our life.
Catastrophic events may challenge our faith, hope and trust, but when you overcome those adversarial moments you graduate to an even greater degree of development in some aspect of your life. Such adversities test our very core, but just like the exams we took in school, we can pass them by learning from our mistakes.
So how do you define your graduation? What and where were you graduating from? Life is interesting, but it is also a lifelong classroom of teachable moments.