The other day I watched the High School graduation ceremony from the school I left in June 2021 to give Kindness Champions all of me along with working on a few other passion projects. I had provided intense support to a few of the graduating seniors and wanted to watch their moment of accomplishment.

Your life is your story and the adventure ahead of you is to fill your purpose and potential.” Kerry Washington

I love graduations. The ceremony, the gowns, the uniquely decorated caps, the music and the speeches. What I love most about these sacred ceremonies is the people. All of the people. Moms, dads, grandmothers, grandfathers, aunts, uncles, friends, cousins, sisters, brothers, stepmoms, stepdads, foster parents, and other caring people.  Members of school staff who are participating in the ceremony or showing up to cheer the students on. In this moment of time, differences are put aside. Regardless of differences of opinion or perspective, history of difficult relationships, problems between people everyone shows up for a common reason. To honor and celebrate someone graduating.

The future belongs in those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” Eleanor Roosevelt

As I watched each graduate walk, jump, skip, and run to accept their certificate of graduation I heard cheers, applause, clapping and some beautifully bellows of congrats. Grins of joy and achievement filled all of the faces of each graduating senior, including those I know that getting to this moment was incredibly challenging and difficult. Students looked into the stands to smile and wave. There was so much cheering going on it felt like the entire crowd was celebrating every student who walked that stage.

Not a single one of us here today has done it alone. We are each a patchwork quilt of those who have loved us, those who have believed in our futures, those who showed us empathy and kindness or told us the truth even when it wasn’t easy to hear. Those who told us we could do it when there was absolutely no proof of that. Someone read stories to you and taught you to dream and offered up some moral code of right and wrong for you to try and live by. Someone tried their best to explain every concept in this insanely complex world to the child that was you, as you asked a bazillion questions like ‘how does the moon work’ and ‘why can we eat salad but not grass.’ And maybe they didn’t do it perfectly. No one ever can.” Taylor Swift

What I thought about is how people are capable of being together for a common goal. We can be around each other, perhaps get to know one another,  in different ways beyond our conflicts and differences. People can cheer one another on even when they don’t like each other. These moments will not resolve some of major problems we are facing. What they do show us is when we have the opportunity to be together and get to know each other beyond our differences, something better for all of us can take place. When we take a moment to get to know each other as people it can help us begin to develop a relationship. If harder stuff comes up we have a relationship that can help us work through the conflicts we are facing.

I leave you amazing people with one of my favorite Ted Talks. It is by Oziem Cekic. The title is: “Why I have coffee with people who send me hate mail.” If you have a moment it’s worth the watch. I thank you for being you and bringing your awesome to the world❤️

Photo by Good Free Photos on Unsplash