Fractured Facade

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Friday, May 10, 2013

They Did It!

Seems like it was only yesterday when my daughter graduated high school. was only a year ago! Seems like forever when my son graduated high school. was three years ago! And today they both are graduating from the same college. How does that happen?

Well, the girl took many advanced placement classes while in high school and scored high on the tests, as well as taking any dual enrollment classes offered. She entered college with so many credits that she was able to finish in one year with an Associate Science in Social Services and First Aid & CPR certified. The boy received some credit for advanced placement classes, but no dual enrollment ones, so he had to take more classes to get his degree. Unfortunately, the requirements shifted to engineering classes to complete his computer science degree, so the boy had to rethink his future. Determined to finish and make lemonade out of lemons, he chose to graduate with two degrees -- Associate Science in Social Services and Associate Science in Business.

The original plan for the girl was for her to continue her education to gain a Bachelor's degree in Journalism. The colleges we visited in Virginia would not add to the knowledge she had already received during her high school years when she had attended Burton and graduated from their Mass Communications program. About the only thing, besides a piece of paper, additional college would help, is that she would be an intern somewhere hopefully in the industry. The best bet in Virginia was VCU in Richmond, but we determined a better one would be at Brooklyn College in Brooklyn. I had resigned myself to losing her to New York City sooner than I thought, but then a mini miracle happened when a local television station placed an ad.

Even though she was still in school she applied, and luckily the person who was hiring remembered her from when she interned two years ago. Although there were persons with higher degrees, and more experienced, they knew the girl's performance and decided to give a local kid a break. They've been wonderful to her and worked around her school schedule. After two weeks on the job she began directing with supervision the weekend late night newscast. Within a month she took over the newscast without supervision. Next week she begins training for the prime time weekly newscasts. She loves what she's doing, loves the people she works with, and really loves getting a decent paycheck. She even loves her job as a hostess at a local chain restaurant, so she hasn't given that up either. Some days she works 18 hours, but she doesn't mind.

I've always said to my kids, "Love what you do for a living, and you'll never feel like you're working." I can attest to the truth to this statement -- when I was single I worked in television, when I had kids I worked as a mother, & now I hope to work as a writer. By the way, the mother job will never end, and will continue to be the best one.

The original plan for the boy was to continue his education to gain a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science. As explained above, that did not happen. Some people aren't thrilled with going to school, and based on the number of times I had to wake him up to make sure he did get to class, I think my son has had his fill. He has been working for three years at a Fortune 500 company. Over that time they have made promises to him, none of which they have kept. Although he is responsible and fulfills his end of the bargain, he does not enjoy his job any more. I think the third time they screwed him over was his breaking point. He feels confident with the skills he has and his two degrees he can improve his future with a full-time gig somewhere else. Beginning Monday he will be sending out his resume. I hope he finds the job he loves.

To say I'm proud of both of my kids goes without saying, but I did anyway! The girl is the first one in our family to graduate college. Heck, on my husband's side, she's the first one to graduate high school! The boy is also the first one to graduate college. It's always been our desire to see our children do better than we did, and I think they have a good start as neither one has to pay back any student loans. What they do from here on in is up to them, but I am confident in both of them. However, the days of Mommy waking them up have come to an end. You can't teach common sense and I think they've both been blessed with it. The only sadness on this most happy day is that Grandma and Grandpa aren't here to witness what fine young adults they've become. I know they're looking down on them, but it's just not the same.

Congratulations to anyone who is graduating. Give yourself a big pat on the back...You did it!!!

"It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves." -- William Shakespeare

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