Graduation Celebration

July 30, 2008
By Alton Wang, Temple City, CA

Teardrops follow the curves of our face, staining our visage with the clear, sticky substance which we release in times of mourning or fear. It reaches to the end of our chin, and it reluctantly lets go of our face, soiling our shirts. When others celebrate because they are one year closer to being free of school, we cry and grieve for leaving our beloved friends. Everyone, the teachers and the students, cherished every minute of the last few moments of middle school, for this may have been the last time they would ever see each other again.

Looks of support and encouragement echoed off of every single teacher's face. They hid their own thoughts and feelings deep into their hearts, locking them away to put on a good face for their students. Pulling their students aside, they tell them words to motivate and inspire them. They will not remember forever those students who excelled or failed, but they will always remember the special students who made them laugh, the students who made them cry, and the students who supported them and cheered them on when they were not having a good day.

We knew since the last days we had as classmates that we will never let one another go, that we will treasure one another's friendships all through high school, sticking together when we manage to survive in rough seas, and fighting with one another to release all our fury. Those who weep are the ones who know they won't survive not seeing their friends daily, those who put on a brave face and comfort us are our true friends, and the select few who don’t care and laugh at our grief should be condemned.

The dreaded bell suddenly went off, and we began to break down. All of us stand huddled under the oak tree, all of our sorrow surfaces, as our faces and clothes are stained. Sounds of comfort float from one person to the other, and paired with the reassuring words are the wailing sounds of howling, and also along with that, the whimpering sounds of weeping. We no longer cared about bravery and the childish sexism, we held onto our friends in a series of hugging and crying.

Our teachers stayed with us, mingling in the crowd, until we had to leave campus. With swollen and blood red eyes, we separated in our different groups, and left to really celebrate our graduation. None of us will ever mention those precious moments when we were bawling, but most of us realized at those last moments what the definition of friends and friendship really was.

With a confused mind I left the campus alone, afraid that by looking at my friends I will crash down again. I was left with a array of thoughts, there is not one word in this world that could have described how I felt at those last moments. I knew I would really miss my friends, but starting then I began the countdown to the start of school in September.

We go to school to learn and make friends and wait for break, but then we go on break to lose our minds and wait for school to start so we can see our friends. Even know, there is not one word in the English language or any other language whose definition would match how we all felt. I'm sure the teachers, my fellow students, and my closest friends will always remember our graduation celebration, a time when we all matured and set aside all our hate to be one, one voice, one school.

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