Chronicles of a College Kid: Homeschool Graduation
We never knew notes could crunch! LOTViolists teaches us so much. —Sparkitors
Sparklers, it's time for you to get an INSIDE LOOK at something you may have never known existed..... HOMESCHOOL GRADUATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ahem... ok, so it may not sound that interesting, but it's definitely out of the ordinary, right? Right. So I am going to tell you about it!
First I had to drive for two hours in the minivan with all my family, and when we were almost there, our air conditioner broke. And it was hot out. Not fun. When we arrived, my mom pinned my graduation cap to my head, and we zipped on the atrocious, ridiculous-looking gown. The sleeves on graduation gowns are SO LARGE. Who designs these?? Feeling like a fool (but assured by my aunt that that's how I'm supposed to look), I gave my mom my stuff, a hug, and a kiss, and proceeded down the hallway to the bathrooms.
At this homeschool graduation, we are allowed to perform, make a speech, dance or whatever we feel like. We submit a tape of ourselves, and if they like our playing, then we're in. I got to play the first movement of Bach's Cello Suite No. 1. Everyone else with instruments apparently got there really early and put their instruments backstage... I didn't. Whoops.
Thinking we were rehearsing for the actual ceremony, I walked all the way out on stage, lugging my viola to Pomp and Circumstance . I didn't realize that This Was It until the procession was over. My huge, puffy sleeve kept getting caught on the little railings that were placed every few steps on the way down to the stage. We smiled for parent pictures, and then at the hilariously obvious cue from our organizer (she looked like a falcon trying to fly), we sat down in the front three rows of seats.
Then some normal things happened. There was actually quite a nice speech by an adult. He said that we now have it inside of us to do ANYTHING that we can dream up. We can make it happen. Each and every one of us has that power. After this speech, it was time for the performances. I was one of the first players, so I grabbed my giant viola to go warm up. Feeling eyes boring holes into my back, I trod on everyone's feet on my way out of the aisle, apologizing like Bugs Bunny. (Scuse me, pardon me, scuse me, pardon me...)
While one boy gave a speech and three sisters sang two songs, I tuned and warmed up. I went out into a hallway, praying desperately that the door wouldn't lock behind me. I warmed up very quietly. When it was my turn, I walked onto the stage with my head held high, and I performed my piece. I didn't fudge anything up, and the last note didn't crunch like it usually does!
After I performed, I had to watch all the other performers. There was a moving dance performance, and this one family played a cool piece with harps and guitars and old wind instruments and some kind of harpish thing with drumsticks. One performer was extremely nervous, and her singing sounded more like terrified crying. One graduate had submitted a video of herself jumping with her horse, which they played on a projector screen. My favorites, though, were the paradoxical families whose younger children gave me more hope for the future than the graduates. It was kind of like, "Look, here are the kids who are holding the future of America. Go class of 2010! But wait—LOOK AT THAT!!! I think we can all look forward to a great future after 2015!!!"
After the performances, it was finally time to graduate. Each family got called up to present their child with their diploma. Then the families were invited to make a little speech. Goody. Sometimes they rambled on and on about how the Good Lord had made EVERYTHING happen, implying that their child had done no work in school. Sometimes they cried. Most of them were wearing clothes that should have remained in the century they were created. One father even cried so hard during his speech that his voice escalated to a literal squeak, and no one knew what he was saying. Ah, fun times.
I had to cross the long stage myself in order to receive my diploma. My mom handed it to me and moved my tassel to the other side. I cried. She cried. We hugged. I hugged my dad, then all three of my brothers at once. None of us made a speech. Then we walked offstage. And I had graduated.
After we were all holding shiny new diplomas and our tassels were now smacking the other sides of our faces, there was one last rousing speech. While everyone in the audience applauded, he boomed a lot of "BY THE POWER VESTED IN ME.....BLAH BLAH BLAH.... CLASS OF 2010!!!!!!!!!!" And out of nowhere, beach balls popped up into the air. We bounced them around at each other, and I was lucky enough to be hit in the head three times!!! *jumps up and down* Then it was over. We all processed out, and our extended families met us outside, taking pictures and giving hugs.
Then we drove home. In our air-conditionless car. Once home, I started looking through the box of memories that my mom had assembled for me. It was strange to look at my entire life in a box. I've really graduated. I can't believe it. I'm excited for the future, and maybe a little scared. I'm glad the past is gone, but in a way I miss it. It's just important for us all to remember: In order to get to where we want to go, we must leave behind our current place.
Overall, it was actually a really nice graduation. I cried multiple times. And it really was a nice touch to have the family present the students with their diplomas. Was it anything like your graduations?