It’s graduation time for the class of 2012. We’re seated in the pews of the Second Presbyterian Church, on the corner of 96th and CPW, awaiting the arrival of the newly minted high school graduates. My mind is wandering all over the place.
First, I try to figure out how I’m supposed to survive the next two hours crammed into a seat obviously not designed for someone of my stature. When anything makes an airline seat seem spacious, that’s saying a lot. From there, my mind began to drift back to my high school experiences and all things associated with that era.
Yeah, it’s been long enough now to be officially classified as an “era.” The year I graduated from high school was the same year Napster made its debut. Remember Napster?!? Although I remember my high school days as if they were yesterday, the reality is that it has been 12 years. Another subtle reminder that I’m kind of old, but I’m also okay with that…kind of.
The procession begins and as the class files in, friends and family begin to snap away on their plethora of cameras and i-Devices. One can’t help but appreciate the significance of these milestone moments. The gleam in the eyes of these young adults is clearly evident. Some are more excited than others because they now believe they’ll finally be free of their supposedly overbearing parents.
She talked about how in order to truly succeed and find fulfillment in the future, this generation was going to have to change the paradigm of how their parents and past generations did things. She talked about seeing the opportunities in the unconventional. She talked about a need for more poets.
Hence, many people, either unhappy with their current state or fired from their current state, are beginning to reassess exactly what dream they bought into. All of a sudden, the tradeoff of security and stability for passion and fulfilment doesn’t seem to have the same allure it once did. While success has long been defined by the number of zeros attached to the end of the paycheck rather than fulfillment in what you do, the rat race can only suck the lifeblood out of you for so long before you starts to really question if it’s really worth it.
Ultimately the ones who find success in what they are passionate about are those with resolve and conviction. Resolve and conviction strong enough to stay the course through all the hardships, disappointments, and discouraging voices telling them to stop wasting their time and get a real job. Ralph Waldo Emerson put it quite succinctly when he said, “Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” Wise words.
Maybe those poets aren’t so bad after all.
Sign Up For Our Newsletter