Monday, June 2, 2008

Austin's Graduation Weedend

OK, so my 18 year old son who I told you a little about here finally graduated last Friday May 30th. It was the day that we had looked forward to for many years and honestly Donna and I were probably more excited than Austin was.

I really believe God blessed the day because the temperature was cooler than it had been all week. There was a slight breeze and it was just a day you knew God was touching. I took Austin to lunch that day and of course there was much anticipation.

Family was coming in. Donna's mom Mary is a little older and has a hard time getting around so we have to get seats in the stadium that are right at the end of the up or down. We were also surprised to hear that Donna's cousin Marie and her Husband Anthony were coming as well. Anthony had recently had a construction accident and both ankles were broken so he was in a wheel chair.. again we had to have very specific seats. But we also wanted to be close enough to see.

I had planned all day to go up to the stadium early to get good seats. I then got word that Hannah and her friend Mariah Melvin were going to head to the stadium early and get seats. They were just going to run by Sonic first and get some food.

Later I took Austin to the school so he could get ready for graduation. I thought I'd just stay up at the stadium with the girls and wait with them for the rest of the family. I get in to the stadium around 6:45 and the place is a third full and all the seating around the entrance ramps are pretty much packed except for way down by the student section. I give Hannah a call to see where she is so I can join her and Mariah and find out she's not there yet. They didn't go to Sonic and pick up food, they stayed and visited and ate and chatted and oh had some traffic issues and got held up and stuff....

Anyway, I go claim some seats on the 22 yard line on the opposite end of the stadium from the stage. I'm a tad frustrated at this point but the packtron is fired up and I figure we'll be able to see what's happening.. They are playing music on the stadium sound system and the next song I hear is "National Emblem" performed by the Fightin' Texas Aggie Band.. cool.. I'm feeling better.

Time passes and finally the family begins to show up as we approach graduation time. We see the graduates at the entrance at the other end of the stadium and they start playing pomp and circumstance... and students attired in purple robes begin filing in.. hundreds of them.. it seems they will never stop coming in. Heck, I didn't think the honor grads were ever going to end much less those normal students that came in after them.

But we know Austin by his look and his walk when he enters the stadium.. we are pumped. He walks down our side of the stadium so I'm glad I didn't go to the other side of the stadium (I had considered this at one point when seating was so limited but I would have been in the sun with my bald head and would have been cooked by graduation). So, finally a good choice.. we scream at Austin when he comes to mid field and turns to the center of the field. Yeah.. we're pumped for our boy...

Intro, invocation, good speech, talking, OK speech, talking then they start calling out names... again.. hundreds of them. Even though Austin is an Anderson and at the front of the line so to speak there are a ton of honor grads..a few A's and then my boy Austin!! He has graduated!!! Awesome!!! then probably 250 to 300 more students after Austin. We stay to the end. I twittered a lot of that so no need to repeat all of it but finally they are all done, the benediction is spoken and graduation is through!!!

We take a few pics with Austin.

Austin with his Granny

Austin with his Mom and Dad

Austin with his aunt Mariellen and Uncle Pat

Austin with his 2nd and 3rd cousins or something like that
(Anthony, Marie and their boy Paul)

We depart the stadium, Austin is riding with a friend because his beemer is in the shop but he heads to project celebration.

Earlier in the year Austin was not very excited about going to project celebration as he does not like large crowds or a lot of commotion. We coach him to give it a try because he can win money or prizes...We go help with PC for a while until around 2:30 and finally go home. Austin stays the night..

He wins a 4 Gig iPod nano and has a pretty good time.

We got to sleep around 3 and thanks to a friend we spent the night in a really nice dark guest room and slept until 9:45.

Now there seems to be a little bit of a change in my boy...He has found a little bit more independence...spending the night at a friends house Saturday night, not calling until late, getting a ride from them the next morning and actually making it to 9:00 a.m. church without any intervention from his parents. Who knows, he may move out someday after all. Not betting on it but we can always hope!

We're so proud of our boy. Next step... A.C.

1 comment:

Romack said...

Artie, congrats to both Austin and the family. I know that you all have been through a lot, and faced a number of circumstances - but I know God will continue to bless you all through the challenges that you overcome in the future. It's so great to see Austin growing up and become a very bright, very caring, and very responsible young man. You should be proud, and I know you are. AC is a whole new ball game, and lots of kids crack under the weight of the responsiblity and challenge...but I don't think you have anything to worry about your boy. God has equipped him, and he's got a great family to help back him up when he needs it.

Sorry we couldn't make it, we wish we could have been there for you all. AND, we need an address for you guys.