๐—•๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ธ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—ฎ ๐—ท๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜† ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ป๐—ผ๐˜ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ต ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐˜๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—บ, ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜† ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ป ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ต๐˜.

I just experienced the start of one such bookend. In a few weeks, my son graduates from college, and that will be the true bookend. But my husband and I were blessed to join our son as he was honored at his schoolโ€™s senior symposium!

His final project for a psychology class won him this honor.

Of course, Iโ€™m filled with all the emotions youโ€™d expect – pride, love, disbelief that my little boy is about to graduate from college. But Iโ€™m also marveling at another aspect of this:

The senior symposium was held in the very same student center ballroom that we sat in with our son and many of these same people during a freshman orientation reception almost four years ago.

Four years ago we were all excited and nervous and beginning a new journey. Today there was still excitement, but also something else in the air – confidence, camaraderie, the warmth of friendships formed and a little sadness at this part of the journey coming to a close.

I dove in and reflected. Feeling and holding both of these bookends. Vividly remembering the emotions from four years ago and some of the fun and meaningful memories we created. People we met who would become important parts of our son’s life. Strangers who became friends.

And then I took in this bookend that is quickly forming. Preparing for the next part of our son’s journey, one that we will be a part of just as were a part of this one, and all that came before it.

It is bittersweet, as every step of this parenting journey is. The journey is a precious, and almost sacred one. And every bookend is both a launching point and a culmination, a cherished signpost along this magnificent journey.

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