Graduations, Beginnings, and Endings

Rev. Dr. Kitty Boitnott, NBCT, RScP

Career Transition & Job Search Coach |

For today's video message, click here.

This past weekend was graduation weekend at many colleges and universities around the country. I attended the ceremonies at the University of Richmond where I am a member of the adjunct faculty, and I had the pleasure of watching five of my students, current and former, march across the stage to collect their diplomas.

In this instance, the students graduating were receiving their Master's degrees in some aspect of education. They are already working, or they have taken some time off from full-time work to complete their degrees. They have dedicated themselves to a standard of professional development that many teachers, though not all, use to promote a higher level of professional achievement.

On Sunday, my undergraduate students graduated, and they are just starting out. I wish each of them well knowing that sometimes life can throw us curve balls that we don't expect, and sometimes we handle them better than others. Whatever life holds for them individually, however, I wish them well. They were smart and savvy and displayed a social conscience that made me proud each time I met with them. I will miss them moving forward.

Graduations are times of beginnings and endings. Students are embarking on their lives as young adults, learning how to manage life on their own and their terms. The endings involve cutting ties with the university and moving away from the supportive and protective environment that was available during their undergraduate years.

For me, this weekend was also about beginnings and endings. It was Mother's Day (Happy Belated Mother's Day to all you mothers out there), and it marked the first Mother's Day I have experienced without my mom. It made me miss her all the more which is interesting to note because I have missed her every single day since she passed on May 15th of last year.

This Mother's Day also marked the end of the year of "First's" without my mom. The first Thanksgiving, the first Christmas, the first birthday, the first Valentine's Day, the first Easter...and now the first Mother's Day." That year of "First's" is a tough one. It was tough when my dad died almost 30 years ago, and it was tough this year. So this weekend marked a beginning and ending for me, too. It is the beginning of a 2nd year without my mom and the end of the year of "First's."

I miss my mom from Facebook

Photo from Facebook:  Motherless Daughters

We mark our lives by the milestones that we reach, don't we? Graduations, weddings, birthdays, funerals...all of these provide a backdrop to the way our lives have gone and the turns they have taken.

I still remember my Longwood graduation like it was just yesterday even though it occurred in May of 1975. I remember my 34th birthday in October when people kept asking me what I wanted, and all I wanted was for my dad not to be gone after his accident just a few weeks before in September of 1986.

I remember meeting my now ex-husband, and I remember going to the lawyer's office to initiate divorce proceedings.

I remember every move I have made (all 8 of them) over the course of my life.

Whether you got to celebrate a graduation or have one coming up or not...whether you have lost a loved one, and you are marking the days for when the pain of loss feels a little less...know that wherever you are in your life, you are exactly where you are meant to be. I don't believe in accidents or coincidences. Life occurs by divine right order, and for each of us, we are on a journey of discovery that leads us to know and better understands that life is made up of the sweet--and sometimes not so sweet--moments that accumulate to make us who we are.

Life is a mystery. Period. But that just makes it more exciting, I think.

What do you think?

On a different but related note, are you at or are you approaching a career milestone? Are you bored and ready for a new challenge? Are you burned out and ready for a change of pace? Do you need to make more money or do you want a greater sense of work-life balance? No one can decide these things for you, but they are questions you should be asking yourself to make sure you are where you want to be professionally.

Check out the new information that I just posted this weekend explaining the benefits of my "Jumpstart Your Job Search in 10 'Easy' Steps." It includes a video and the benefits of the program broken down into steps. Regardless of whether you are thinking of making a job change or you are deciding it is time to change your career altogether, you may benefit from this program. It would also make a great gift for a new graduate who hasn't landed his or her first job yet. This program will offer step-by-step instructions on how to get started and how to stay motivated.

Check it out and share with others who may be at a similar crossroads. With the money back guarantee that is available if you don't find the program helpful, you really have nothing to lose!

Click here to see what I mean.


All other photos by Shutterstock.




Vanessa Jackson
Phoenix Rising Coaching
1541 Flaming Oak
New Braunfels Texas 78132
United States of America