My graduation gown has been hanging in the door of my closet for several days. Occasionally, a breeze from the open windows will catch it, but otherwise, it drapes in stillness. Tomorrow, I will slip it over my shoulders, adjust that silly square hat over my hair, and make my way to my college graduation ceremony.
It struck me yesterday how fitting the location of the gown is. It hangs beside two old family photographs – one of my grandparents and another of my parents. The sleeve strokes the glossy finish when rustled, as if in gratitude. As if the physical representation of my achievement understands the deep gratitude I am feeling.
I am looking forward to expressing my gratitude through words uttered between enthusiastic hugs. I am looking forward to seeing my extended family in just one short month. I am not sure if I will have the time or method to find the words to express how thankful I am for a lifetime of love, growth and encouragement. I hope to try.
For now, thank you thank you thank you to my family. Thank you for your constant love. Thank you for the birthday cards, phone conversations and letters. Thank you for sitting in the freezing rain to watch me play sports. Thank you for the high fives over high grades. Thank you for teaching me how to read, to ride a bike and to have a kind heart. Thank you for ‘I miss you.’ Thank you for ‘I’m proud of you.’ Thank you for the kisses on scraped knees. Thank you for keeping me grounded while letting my head stay in the clouds.
Thank you for giving me the world. I love you all.