I collect commencement speeches. I love them.
People who have worked with me know this factoid. I can even be pretty annoying about it. I will even make you sit and watch them during faculty meetings.
There are no bigger speeches in life than commencement speeches. This is the speech of reality. This is the speech that matters. It matters more than all the tests, all the papers, all of the projects, this person is going to tell you about LIFE. They are going to launch you into the REAL.
You are about to “enter” something. It could be college, it could be the workforce, it could be the military, but you are leaving to go into the “unknown.”
These speeches often are about dreams, rah rah, “you can do anything,” but I collect different ones, ones with real advice. Ones with experience and data. Ones that every child and adult should hear, because experience is the real key to life, not school.
I have one clear favorite. It’s Steve’s too.
Admiral McRaven’s.Yes that name is someone you know. I hear you saying it. “I know that name, but how?” He was in charge of the Bin Laden raid and is one of the MOST respected men in the world. Or at least in my world. He is a man of sacrifice and dignity.
Its 19 minutes. Put this in your schedule. Make in into a nicely colored block of time if you need to, because you need to watch the ENTIRE thing (or at least the first 10 minutes). I know you’re busy.
It will change how you parent. It will change your daily life.
I share this with you here.
So mom/dad going through this, or mom/dad right behind me, if there is anything you can do in this fight. If there is anything we can do to make it more manageable. If there is anything we can do at all when everything feels so out of our control. It has to be simple.
Let’s make our beds. Our home beds. Our hospital beds. Let’s make them.
I know it’s not easy. 8AM is my least favorite time of the day. I am at my lowest, but today I started making my bed.