I’m exhausted, though morning has just begun. I came in late last night (early this morning) at 2:30 a.m. after a long 6+ hour drive down Highway 5 with Nettie and other family members. Fortunately, I wasn’t driving, my son, Graham, was. I was trying to keep my bum from permanently reconfiguring itself into the shape of the rear seat.

It was graduation day and we were heading back from Palo Alto to Los Angeles.

It’s been a busy graduation season in our family. Our nephew, Benjamin, (my sister’s son) just completed a Masters Degree in Communications, which unfortunately Nettie and I missed because we were in Prague at the time.

Our nephew, Taylor (my wife’s sister’s son) graduated yesterday with a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, hence the late night drive down the San Joaquin Valley.

And our nephew-in-law, Keaton (my wife’s sister’s husband’s grandson…you gotta draw the family tree to figure it out), graduated with a degree in Theater Arts last week.

I’m tired just writing out these accomplishments, let alone considering making my way into the future as one of these three young men. And yet that’s what I find myself thinking about…another future, another June.

This future begins with the recollection, vague and shape-shifting I admit, of my own graduation with a Masters Degree in English nearly forty years ago. It takes a bit of courage to write that sentence. Has it really been forty years? Of course it has. And what have I done in that time? A lot. A lot of it very good. And some of it less so.

Grad StandsBut I keep wondering what would I do if could step into the future of one of these young men who collected degrees in this graduation season. And you know what? I keep coming up blank. I’m not in that picture of the graduation see above. I’m nowhere in those seats down there on the field. I’m up in the stands cheering them on.

You’ll say, “That’s the way it’s supposed to be. Your season is past theirs is the future.”

I know that. Of course I know that. We all know that. It’s the handing of the torch (and maybe a smidge of advice) to the next generation, the cheering on of the new crop of heroes and heroines.

And yet…the sky was so blue yesterday as we walked through the campus, the lawns and flowers and college buildings were so beautiful, the students so young and vital and seemingly within reach that it was very hard…no, it was impossible…not to want it for yourself.

Not to go back, you understand, but to go forward into another future, one that is surely waiting there for you.

Then your head clears, you shake off the daydream and reflect on the richness of the life you’ve lived, and more importantly, the life you’re currently living.

I’ve been lucky. A successful career. A great wife. Two great kids, the eldest of whom, Miles, recently engaged to a great lady with a wedding planned for December. And all these nephews stepping into a brilliant future that belongs to them alone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Responses to Another Future, Another June

  1. Beverly Pine says:

    Frank. Got you beat on this graduation theme. My best friend arrived the day before graduation up in Seattle a few weeks ago. When she got there, her son (the graduate) wanted to immediately go shopping. You see … without their knowledge he recently decided he was really a girl and wanted to buy a proper skirt and heels for graduation the next day. Welcome to graduation 2013!

    Beverly

  2. William Szych says:

    Your blog entries are great…keep up the good work. I wish all the grads in your family the best of luck, the best of everything that life has to offer. And reminded of the quote: “The best things in life…aren’t things.”

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