Blended

Commencement Collapse

Along with hundreds of parents in Westfield, my sons just graduated from high school (congratulations all!). It’s a funny thing being on the inside, being one of the moms who’s actually got kids in the flowy gowns. It’s a completely different vantage point than the one I’m used to; on many graduations past, I’ve felt deep joy while driving on Grove and seeing the seniors walk toward Kehler Field draped in blue and white. They owned the streets with their accomplishments, their promise, and their myriad transformations from kid who drove everyone crazy to adult who drives everywhere. When I watched those little robed mobs make their way toward the field, I felt very far away, as though my own children and I would never experience it first-hand. Then, I woke up one cloudy day this June, and we did. 

I’ve read many parental accounts of the mixed emotions brought on by high school graduation. Sadness. Excitement. Endings. Beginnings. Don’t go. Don’t let the door kick you. What I didn’t expect during the season of this culminating event was the irresistible temptation to sleep. Often. Which inspired me to research the various reasons that people abandon consciousness to see where graduation might fall on the list.

-All work and no play definitely make me a tired girl. Between winding down a school year of my own and making sure we ordered food for our family graduation party (it came down to the wire), I haven’t taken too many casual evening strolls.

Sign Up for E-News

-Shunning the sun. Yes, but not on purpose. There’s nothing like 50 degree days through mid June to sap my interest in being awake.

-Barely breathing, a close relative of “all work and no play.” To-do post-its yellowing every flat surface around my house combined with sudden crying spurts in the car meant not so much quiet time inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth. Speaking of crying, the weirdest tunes have broken me. Remember the theme to Hill Street Blues, a show that stopped airing a decade before our graduates were born? I came across it on iTunes and it somehow came to epitomize all my nostalgia.  

-Mild dehydration/Too much alcohol. These are listed separately, but don’t they go hand in hand? G and I turned to each other on many a June night amidst the looming possibility of graduation day rain and the rampant calculation of the minimum final exam scores needed to get Bs for the year, and agreed that it looked like the wrong week to stop sniffing glue. 

Bright lights at night. Not a factor, but a trip to Norway sounds great right about now. 

Vitamin plus coffee for breakfast. Should step it up on the former, don’t partake in the latter.

Overdoing exercise. If only. Along with the dearth of late day strolls has been a total lack of physical exertion. My neglected muscles have no memory. 

Slouching. I can improve my posture, but this one’s kind of a reach.

Too much noise. Maybe our graduate with a gift for emanating noise is responsible for my shut-eye. His gift shines when he - and this is not an exhaustive list - talks, walks, climbs stairs, opens pretzels, talks on the phone, and blows his nose. 

Interestingly, children reaching a milestone causing them to leave home so that your relationship irrevocably changes is not considered a cause of narcolepsy. When I’m not drifting off, I’m feeling walloped by love, apprehension, and guilt. Guilt because I take responsibility for allowing time to evaporate the way it did. If I had just held on tighter, been more awake, maybe this August we’d be buying new afternoon binders instead of comforters, sheets, and towels. 

Liz Kingsley lives in Westfield with her girlfriend and their five children. During the day, she teaches Special Education and Basic Skills at a local elementary school, writes poetry and columns about her family, and directs The Writers Studio. At night, she collapses from exhaustion.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Rahway

Hartz Mountain Presents to Planning Board

July 19, 2018

CRANFORD, NJ – After months of waiting, Hartz Mountain continued its application for 750 Walnut at Wednesday’s Planning Board meeting.

James Rhatican, Vice President of Land Use and Development at Hartz Mountain, along two witnesses, real estate broker Matt McDonough and architect Bruce Englebaugh, spoke on Hartz Mountain’s behalf.

Rhatican referred to McDonough as an ...

Mayors Push for Law Permitting Driver's License for Immigrants

July 20, 2018

PERTH AMBOY, NJ - Five mayors from northern and central New Jersey today called for passage of a state law permitting immigrants to get driver's licenses even if they are undocumented, saying it boosts public safety as well as the economy.

"This is important for every resident for a better life and a better life for the state of New Jersey," said Perth Amboy Mayor Wilda ...

Step Up and Build a Stronger Union County

July 19, 2018

Union County residents who are seeking a meaningful, high-impact way to volunteer in their community can sign up as a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Essex, Hudson and Union Counties.

The organization is currently seeking volunteer mentors for its best-known program, Community Based Mentoring. The program involves individual mentoring with a local child or teen, age 6 to 18, with a ...

Union County Hosts Events and Programs for Special Needs Residents

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to announce a series of programs and events throughout the summer and fall for residents with special needs and their families, coordinated through the new Office for People with Special Needs in collaboration with community partners.

“Union County is committed to providing every resident with more opportunities to enjoy activities ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_574768912fb23a4cacc7_bfeb2b8d2a5b0913fb60_2f2194e6f686708fbbc3_pd_fd_bbq

Sat, July 28, 12:00 PM

Clark Recreation Center, Clark

Clark PD vs Clark FD BBQ Cook-Off

Food & Drink Police & Fire

Carousel_image_1eb83a6fad4b6893940e_17ee96028d17dc070892_a_new_design

Thu, August 9, 7:00 PM

Union Elks Lodge #1583 , Union

Donna Summer Tribute Concert

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, September 22, 8:00 PM

Union County Performing Arts Center, Rahway

SOLE Defined

Arts & Entertainment

Crowdfunding Options for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

Source: Many small start-up businesses and tech ventures in search of capital turn to popular online platforms for crowd fundraising of financial resources to get their concept off the ground and launched into market. Indiegogo, Kickstarter, and GoFundMe, to name a few, offer solutions in generating cash to fund new ideas. How do you get people to contribute to your cause?  Sam Burlum ...