Actual photo of Red's daughter from 2008 when she graduated Pre-K

Color photo taken by Red in 2008, underlying image by 221A on iStock

When I was pregnant with each of my daughters, although four years apart, friends as well as total strangers, would tell me to enjoy every moment because it would all go by in the blink of an eye. Then, once they were born and it seemed like every waking (and even sleeping) moment was about them, every time I heard the phrase "the days are long, but the years are short," I'd roll my eyes, thinking, "Yeah, that's clever, but I doubt it." Well, as I sit here realizing that my youngest daughter has now walked the stage for her high school graduation, I'm feeling that although I didn't totally disbelieve those words of wisdom so many years ago, there's still no getting around the fact they were true.


Graduation was touch-and-go as they were forecasting heavy rain and potential flooding, but it seemed destined to be that she graduated yesterday, June 6, which was also D-Day. Maybe I was projecting my love of history, but I thought it most appropriate as while she's holding on to being a high schooler for as long as possible, yesterday's ceremony marked the beginning of her being "liberated" from high school and starting the next journey of her life when she enters college in a few months.

But I digress, as I often do, or maybe I'm just trying to avoid reality, something I've also been known to do, especially as I'm finding this a very bittersweet time. Of course, I'm immensely proud of her and what she's accomplished, and I can only imagine the possibilities and opportunities that await her. But I am overcome with emotion and awe when I look at the person she has become.

I look at her and see my baby. I look at photos of her growing up, and they all seem like yesterday. I wonder how someone can be five years old and proudly going off to their first day at kindergarten or bravely going to sleepover camp for the first time to – seemingly overnight – becoming a high school freshman standing on the high school volleyball court for the first time as a junior varsity player or heading off to that same sleepover camp as a junior counselor. Or a million other images that come into my mind these days …

Because the memories seem endless, as do the photos. And each one makes me smile, makes me proud, but also makes me a little sad because they remind me of days long gone. But yet while the word "bittersweet" is so apt right now, I know that as I look at her, not only as my daughter, the high school graduate, but as a beautiful young lady who's ready, maybe more than she realizes, for the next stage of her life, that perhaps it's time for me to get past the bittersweetness of the moment … and celebrate this incredibly significant time in her life with all the joy and excitement that it deserves.

Photo by nycshooter on iStock


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


This past weekend, I noticed a bunch of flags on my street and wondered why since July 4th is still almost a month away. But this morning, I learned that today's Flag Day.


Black's Head Black assets.rebelmouse.io


Well, for someone who likes to decorate for the holidays, I would have thought you would have known all about it.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


I've heard of it, but I never really thought much about it, let alone when it is. I knew it had to do with the American flag, but it surprised me that it has nothing to do with Betsy Ross, which legend has made the first flag, although it seems there's no evidence to support that.


Black's Head Black assets.rebelmouse.io


If you want an interesting "story", read about why the American flag is called Old Glory. Regardless, the American flag, like all flags, communicates a message.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


I know you like to connect odd dots, but only you would see a connection between flags and communications.
Keep Reading ... Show less
Design by Sawyer Pennington, Underlying photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


I can't believe that Sawyer's graduated from high school and will be off to college in a few months. It's so bittersweet. Especially as it seems like only yesterday you were bringing me dinner in the hospital the day she was born – it was wedding soup from my favorite Italian restaurant.


Black's Head Black assets.rebelmouse.io


Well, since that has now become one of her favorite restaurants, that is where we should go to celebrate the start of her exciting new journey.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


Exciting is an understatement. As soon as she finished her Zoom session with the orientation team at Belmont University, she came downstairs and talked a mile a minute about all the incredible course offerings, and before I knew it, she opened her laptop and was going through everything with me.


Black's Head Black assets.rebelmouse.io


When she showed it to me, I was impressed by the range of courses available, and it made me want to go back to college. But, I was most impressed by her enthusiasm and commitment to opening herself up to opportunities that she might not have previously considered.


Red's Head assets.rebelmouse.io


I know! For years, starting when we taught at KIPP Houston High School, you've told students that college was a step-along-the-way, not a destination. And the perfect opportunity to try new things.


Black's Head Black assets.rebelmouse.io


I also said, "Homework never ends; it just is called 'research' when you get older."
Keep Reading ... Show less