BELMONT STUDENT COLUMN: Some thoughts about graduation

Student sends a message that is not your typical greeting card sentiment

The phases of the moon have always fascinated me.

To me, the moon is the most seducing thing out there. You can never see it wholly for what it is, kind of like man. It thrives on being balanced and composed. Science can’t tame it and man can’t conquer it. I’ve always liked that.

With another school year nearing a close, this time of year is feverish, rich with events, new beginnings and nostalgia; a brighter phase, a wholesome phase.

Typically, graduates will receive a plethora of Hallmark cards and will have “Breakaway” by Kelly Clarkson (or some other cheesy song that tries to illustrate the milestone you just passed in just three minutes) stuck in their head. They’ll hear sayings like “reach for the stars” or horrific stories about the dreaded freshman 15, as if these short anecdotes will prepare them for anything.

Do getting cards and flowers mean you’ve achieved any more than your classmates? Every diploma is the same, save for the name, and they are considered our tickets into adulthood. These tickets symbolize the potential we have, and obstacles we are strong enough to face.

It’s a nonreligious ceremony that still embodies faith: faith in us, faith in who we are to become and faith in what we still have to learn. This doesn’t have to be capitalized; development is a continuum and therefore can’t be regulated by age.

So, here’s my message that certainly hasn’t been captured on a Hallmark card.

Seduce the world and let it seduce you. Do not let it consume you, digest you and then regurgitate you for its own idle pleasure. Fall in love with the way things are and the concepts of what could be. Take the time you need to rest in the craters of the moon.

Never fail to be inspired and, in turn, to impart inspiration. Allow others to carry your burdens with you, because even Atlas couldn’t hold us up without help. And don’t forget to grieve. It’s a phase like the moon and there will always be times darker than others.

However, there are also times that are going to be brighter than others and this is one. The greatest thing about the moon though, is that change is constant.

We shouldn’t be celebrating this one phase with Hallmark cards and cheesy songs, but rather the fact that there will be others. The idea of balance and composure isn’t defined on what phase you’re in. It’s the cycle you can’t get out of.

Shannara Erickson is a Grade 12 student at Belmont secondary.

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