Graduation Day

It was one of those days. The kind that begins its seductive promotion long before the actual event. Would it be the kind of monumental day where anticipation sometimes trumps execution?

After a four year tease, the sunny day arrived. Because of a recent 3 week marathon to produce a 38 page metasynthesis, and a 3 day (and night) marathon making a graduation gift for my friends, I was especially thirsty for the freedom and joy this day promised.

As the day gradually unfolded, each elysial event proved equal to my imagination.

Here is a ReCaP

Thursday, May 7 began at 5:30 am after a brief four-hour doze. The family packed the car with the essentials: skittles, licorice, pillows and people and bounded off to SLC, arriving just in time to set up for our party. My friends and colleagues Amanda Turner, Bridget Penick, Heide Bedingfield, Melissa Hinton and all of our families pigged out on chicken salad croissants, potatoe and macaroni salad, fresh pineapple, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, and homemade desserts.

In between kids getting their shoes stuck up in the basketball hoop and surprise visits from out-of-state family, we managed to eek out a memorable program. There was singing. And laughter. And tears. Bridget gave a stand-up comedy routine to rival Brian Regan, describing a typical day with the famous fab five. I laughed so hard it was the equivalent of doing 50 sit-ups.

Forget this nurse practitioner business. I decided that Bridget should take her routine on the road. And I should be her manager. She would make people laugh and I would get rock-hard abs.

We ended with a slideshow documenting our two and a half year journey together. Pink Martini showed up. Nice.


Pre-event festivities. My brother melted my heart.

Melissa sings a parody of our days in school

Bridget brings down the house

Next was the graduation itself. Short and sweet. And official. My name was actually listed in the program. It must be for real. I was tasting euphoria. Even smelling it. Funny how euphoria smells an awful lot like orchids. (Thanks, mom and dad)

Sibs to die for

My rocks. My backbone.


I love my family

Trust me. I'm a nurse practitioner

Three generations

Most of the family nurse practitioners, class of 2009

My brothers, parents and family then indulged in an expensive and delicious meal at the Tin Angel Cafe: an eclectic artsy joint with a small space and a large following.

Taking it easy at the Tin Angel Cafe

Mom, Justin, Eli and Stockton

The next day was spent hanging with my family enjoying downtown SLC, especially the tulips of Temple Square. The beauty of the grounds mirrored the peace in my heart (well...that is the peace in the section of my heart that is not worried about finding a job). I feel so grateful for the opportunity to have attended graduate school and for a supportive, awesome family.

Yes, it was one of those days. The kind that leaves a honeyed savor lingering in the memory for months and years. A day where actuality exceeded expectations.

Thanks family, for making this an awesome day.

PS: I missed you so much Kristi and Jordan.


Nat said...

Congratulations, Jen!! What an accomplishment!

LoriPhdinme said...

I am in awe of your awesome self. I share in your joy

LGH said...

I was hoping you would share your thoughts about this incredible day. Love the pictures, the thoughts, the emotions, all of it. AND, most especially, I enjoyed the word elysial - a totally new word that I looked up, thanks to your link! Yes, it was, indeed, a perfect day, which you deserve after such hard work!

Libby said...

Congratulations on finishing a long and arduous goal! I am so glad you had wonderful family and friends there to celebrate with you.

Kinder recipes said...

Wow that is awesome. Congrates. You all are such an awesome family. Good Luck in your future, as a Nurse practitioner im am sure you will do just great. Sorry we missed seeing you while in town.


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