my oldest niece graduated from high school last night.
and while she's not technically a blood relation - i like to think that friends are the family you pick and actually don't mind visiting.
graduation is always such a milestone in any life. when your child starts kindergarten - it's always so exciting - they're starting off on a grand adventure and God alone knows what awaits them on this adventure.
high school graduation is much the same. as we sat there last night, listening to what the valedictorians planned on doing with their lives (a degree in microbiology with a minor in genetic engineering? good grief - i barely could manage remedial math.), you can't help but wonder what each of these kids lives has in store.
and selfishly - i didn't give a rip about the rest of the 539 kids there. just a certain blond, blue-eyed wonder.
i've known her most of her life. we would all go to Disneyland together, where her mom had started a tradition of taking Christmas card photos in front of the massively gorgeous tree in Main St.
she was (and still is) amazingly beautiful. Brendan & i would push her down Main St. in her stroller, while people would be sitting on the curb, waiting for the parade to start, we would prompt her to wave to the crowds, blow kisses and yell 'see my movie!' to the assembled.
which she did. hey - when you're 3, you're very eager to please.
(and yes, occasionally someone would ask the name of the movie. there still might be some yahoo from Podunk looking for her movie at RedBox)
at 4, she joined up in soccer...where she distinguished herself by being far more interested in the grass daisies than the plays.
when we got married, i asked her mom to be my matron of honor, and her daughter to be my flower girl. her mom was concerned that the girl would do something to 'ruin' the ceremony. i say anything that happened would only be cute - it couldn't ruin a thing.
and while she was very concerned about my gloves that her mom was holding for me, the whole thing went off without a hitch...or any ruined moments.
she got through those gawd-awful pre-teen years relatively unscathed...well, except for the continual teasing of her uncle. she takes care of her younger brother and strives to include him in as many things as she can...even when he has irritated her to the point of no return.
and now she's leaving childhood for a new chapter. a new adventure. again, God alone knows what is in store for her as she travels down new and uncharted territory.
i for one, cannot wait for the next installment.