“Hmmm…well you don’t have a driver’s license yet, so not today,” I replied.
“How old do you have to be to get one?” she asked.
“You have to be sixteen, but you can get a permit when you are 15 and start driving then.”
She flopped backward and rolled her eyes, “But that’s….forever….I’m only five.”
It doesn’t seem possible that she’s is a college graduate and will be starting her first “real” job in less than a week.
She will receive her degree from DePaul which is in Chicago but she decided to bypass the commencement ceremony and we celebrated her graduation a week early in St. Louis. She made the suggestion to have her party at my parent’s home and make it a family gathering for a variety of reasons. It’s an easier trip for everyone involved, we didn’t have to worry about finding a place to have the party, and there wouldn’t be the additional expenses for hotels and restaurants.
After we decided when and where the party would be she was faced with a dilemma, to “walk” or not to “walk.” The date of graduation fell on the same day as the wedding of one of her good friends. We had more than a few conversations about the pros and cons. In the end, I think the opportunity to spend time with close friends and family versus sitting for hours with thousands of people and no close friends nearby made the decision an easy one. She would still receive her diploma and celebrate the event with two parties, but there was one missing ingredient. She wouldn’t have a picture of her wearing a cap and gown.
I searched and searched trying to find the colors for DePaul and a place to rent a cap and gown on short notice. I’m famous for my mad Googling skills and have been known to find more than a few obscure but valuable pieces of information. Evidently I overcomplicated the search in this case. My mom replied to my email with the colors and website links in under a minute.
I carried the FedEx envelope from the laundry room to the guest room where Katie was waiting for me and hoped I wasn’t holding a paper mache cap and a crepe paper gown.
“Katie, I know the one thing you said you’d miss about walking was that you wouldn’t have a picture in a cap and gown. Sooo….this might be goofy, but I ordered one for you. I have no idea what kind of quality it is, so remember it’s the thought that counts.”
“Oh Mommy….of course I will.”
I was pleasantly surprised when I felt a silky fabric underneath the plastic wrapping, “Wow, it’s not bad. It’s real material.”
She giggled, “Mommy this could be one of the dorkiest things ever, but I also have to say I really love it.”
I think it took her less than three seconds to put it on and the smile didn’t leave her face for the rest of the day.
Congratulations Honey! I am very proud of you.