Today marks a special occasion in our family.
My “baby” is graduating from kindergarten.
She of the long blonde hair, brown eyes, fair skin, tall, slim figure and giant snaggle-tooth smile will walk across the stage in her little cap and gown to receive a diploma that allows her entrance into first grade.
Because she aims to please, she will follow directions exactly – sitting, standing and singing on cue. She will appear to be focused on the events at hand, but those of us who know her best realize that her thoughts could be a million miles away.
My dad, one of those people tremendously gifted with words, said of this granddaughter, “If her outside looked like her inside, she would always be in dress-up clothes.”
This is one of those many moments in life where happiness and sadness, exhilaration and melancholy coincide.
Happiness for her, for the excitement surrounding the evening, for all she’s accomplished in her little life so far; sadness for the years fleeing so quickly, taking her slowly but surely away from us one day.
With smiles on our faces, much love in our hearts and tears in our eyes, we watch her take these steps today.