Half of the 2017-2018 school year is over. Come May we will see another group of seniors take their walk into the next phase of life. I am sure any one of them can tell us how many days or maybe even hours they have left of high school. High school graduation is a real milestone in a young adult's life.
Even though I am a long-time grandmother, I still remember leaving my children on their first days of kindergarten. I truly believe they took it better than I did. I was careful not to cry in front of them but it was not easy. It was the first major change in my early motherhood years.
Then just 12 short years later they were starting their senior year. Those last nine months went by faster than any other nine months of their entire school years. Our son graduated in 1988 and our daughter graduated in 1991.
Seniors still have a lot of things left to do this year. They will finish basketball season, go into baseball/softball season and whatever else comes in the spring. End of the year choir and band concerts will be rehearsed, proms to attend, final tests to be taken, college visits and attend a few classes so they will be ready to graduate in four short months.
We parents know from the start it is going to happen in 13 years but one day in May we wake up and today is the day. Wow, talk about reality setting in.
The young people have a lot of work to do, forms to fill out and a lot of decisions to make between now and graduation but it will all come about.
They have to choose a college, get a job, decide on a career, or maybe decide to go into the military. It can be a little overwhelming for seniors and parents.
There are a few high school seniors who know what they want to do early on and do not change their plans. Others are searching for what is right for them. I always tell them it is okay to change their minds. Not too many 17 or 18 year olds know what they want to do for the rest of their lives.
As I look back, I don't know why we were in such a hurry to get out and leave our comfort zone. I am sure seniors feel much the same today as we did and can't wait until they graduate. It is a journey we look forward to. We all had future plans.
My husband and I were going to leave this area, move to greener pastures and never look back. We did leave but it only took us a few years to realize we really missed our family we had left in Arkansas. We loaded up our Volkswagen with our baby boy and our dog, rented a moving truck and back home we came. The homecoming event took place 48 years ago in May. We have visited a lot of places throughout the years but we have never seriously thought about moving "off" again.
A Manila 60s reunion (my time) will be held in April. It is hard to believe this year will mark 50 years since my classmates left MHS. I am just glad I am still around to remember some of those days. I enjoy running into my classmates from time to time. None of us have changed one bit.
Many of my friends are retiring or already retired but I am not ready. I have had many people tell me I will know when the time is right. Some say they went to work one day and it hit them all at once. Others say retirement was planned well ahead. A couple of my friends retired and then went back to work because they discovered the time was not right.
I have worked most of my life and I can't imagine not going to work every day.
When I started working for the newspaper in 1970, it was a part time job and it was in Manila. It was perfect for me. I planned to stay until the children got a little older. Well, they got a little older and I am still here. I really enjoy coming to work every day so I am calling that my sign to keep on working.