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Graduates Walking

December 17th,

As the boredom set in waiting for hours at the stadium, classmates and I chattered away about life and what is in store next. At times, though, I felt compelled to not say exactly what my plans were. Not in a mean way, but simply because some don’t need to know what goes on in one’s life. I rarely talked to them during these 2 years, so would they really care what I do next? You can tell when you’re older who are the ones who care, the ones just being polite, and the ones who want the gossip and make comparisons. Although we are raised to at least talk with them, we don’t have to force ourselves to put up with people who don’t bring out the best in you and vice versa. Whether at work, school, relationships, etc. life is too short to deal with the bull.

Ceremony is underway, other graduates walking, and I can’t help but think again. You know how people like to “people watch”? They like to observe behavior, listen in on their gossip, or paint a ridiculous story for their own amusement. I don’t often do this, but on this day, I did what I sometimes catch myself doing instead: wonder what life would’ve been. It’s different from story-telling in that I’m not looking for mystery or excitement from portraying a stranger into a new role. As I see face-after-face crossing the stage getting their diploma, both older and younger than I, I sat there bored generally thinking. Thinking what is next for them. I hear their friends and family shouting for some, while I felt a little down for those who crossed the stage to just decent clapping. I always wish everyone got cheered for loudly, because for some this is their biggest moment; treasure it forever.

I sat there looking at graduates near me and afar, wondering why haven’t we met yet? We could be sitting next to an amazing person, yet here they are just sitting bored and on their phones. Someone who could change your life, passing by in our lives. Many pass by in our lives, but not many actually say hello. For those who have read my posts since the early days know my thoughts on you fellow strangers from all around the world: meet as many as you can, even if you prefer the introvert life. Just in that dome, there were no doubt great people as well as terrible ones, both in the crowd cheering and among me in the graduate class. But we will never know unless we take chances and get to know random people; if even for just a brief moment. Life and us change, and so do our views on things. But one thing remains constant, and that is our desire to explore. But with careers and technology bringing exploration closer to us, many fall further away from actually venturing out.

Many who got the diplomas will probably start careers, others still searching, a few taking a break. I may never see all these graduates again, or may not recognize them, but people I come across I do think: hello. One word can make a difference, and in this case it’s getting to know others. I’ve already discussed my future plans here, and many others will be taking their own career and life chances. After the ceremony my friend and I got lost to the restaurant, which led to poor service and a change in plans. Not the best way to start my 26th year, nor celebrate graduation, but as I said life throws you curveballs. Ups and downs will come to you, but if you have loved ones, even if just one, they help you get through it all. That chapter in my life ended with the possibility of reconnecting with an old friend, and my sight looking ahead at making new ones soon. The holiday week is here, today being Christmas Eve, and I wish you all a great time with your loved ones. Maybe one day we’ll meet, but if not there are many others near you and afar who are just as awesome. It all starts with taking a chance on a complete unknown. . . Happy Holidays

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