Ms. P's Note
As I say farewell to my incredible ROAR seniors, it’s easy to just turn and focus on the next group, to move on to the next task, the next edition, the next next.
Instead, I wanted to pause to thank the Class of 2021. You have all been an amazing part of my life for the last four years. The seniors who are graduating are individually incredible and collectively unstoppable. Their intellect, humor, awareness, creativity, and fearlessness have left a mark on me; I have been changed by them for the better.
Seniors, as you move on to your next next, I invite you to take a little time and space (in between watching Netflix and not being able to account for hours of your life) to do the following tasks. Consider this my last assignment to you:
Be proud, kind, and loving to yourself as you end what has been a tumultuous chapter of your life. Love yourself for who you are, right now. Separate yourself from your grades and predicted scores and acceptances and rejections because those aren’t you. You are you, and you are closing a chapter of your life to move on to the next. Move on with love.
Embrace conflicting feelings about this moment. You don’t have to be all happy, all angry, all sad, or all tired: you don’t have to be all anything. You can be happy AND sad. You can be proud AND hesitant. You can be excited AND scared. By feeling both feelings fully, it might be easier to process them and move forward from them.
Put down what no longer serves you. Sometimes, it’s good to focus your energy on others, but it can also be a way to hold off on moving forward; it can feel easier to make life someone else’s fault. But you are here right now. This is your life. This is it. Stop holding on to what you can’t control, so that you can make room for what really matters.
I may be wearing my yoga pants again this year, but I look forward to still doing what we do at every commencement ceremony: celebrating you and wishing all of you the very best on your next adventure. ROAR into your future, Class of 2021!
Whatever you do and wherever you go, know that we will always be proud of you.