Since returning to school in January 2008, I have been dead-serious about my grades (to the point that I have cried, yelled, and even said a few four-letter-words in the process). But, I never imagined that all this hard work would lead up to three of the sweetest words in my college career: Summa Cum Laude.
Seriously, I made an F (AN F!!!!!) in Biology 101 at the University of Montevallo because I skipped class regularly to watch FAMILY FEUD. I mean, I was once a total slacker! How I made it to Summa Cum Laude (and also a fancy little red hat to wear, since I am graduating with a 4.0), I am not sure...
I didn't fully realize it until yesterday's ceremony that I really have worked extremely hard to be where I am. Thanks to God's many and abundant provisions, I have been afforded an opportunity that I know I have not and will not take for granted. I have sacrificed energy, time, an income, and even some relationships to achieve my goal of graduating with a 4.0. And, somehow, I did it.
I am so thankful for the people who cheered me on, namely my sweet mama and even my Daddy, who I think has been cheering me on from Heaven. :) All those times I was exhausted, all the times I cried, all the times I wanted to give up, I just heard my Daddy saying, "Hey, kiddo, it's going to be alright." I hate that he won't be there to see his little girl graduate with highest honors, and I hate even more that he won't be there to see me get married (which is a whole other story!).
While cleaning out the storage shed today, Blake and I stumbled across a whole bunch of my dad's old stuff. Coveralls, tools, gloves, lamps, and the things from the funeral we hid away. Cards sent from friends, newspapers from the weekend he died, and the program from his funeral. It was such an appropriate time to find those things... a time when I have been thinking of him constantly, hoping he can see a glimpse of where his little girl is finally headed. Somehow, I think he knows. Even if he doesn't, I know he would be proud. :)