To my future 2028 graduate,
It's that time of the year, finally; invites went out for your preschool graduation today.
I am so very proud and happy for you, that you have reached this first of many milestones.
Yet I fear that I will turn around only to find myself holding your high school graduation invitation.
I know it may sound crazy, but still.
See, time has a way of going faster than we ever could imagine.
I know you are so very happy to be leaving preschool behind -- and more than ready to join the ranks of elementary school kids in kindergarten this fall, as you tell me every chance you can.
And yet, I need to take this moment to convey all that I am feeling and thinking for what lies ahead.
It doesn't seem all that long ago that I was starting kindergarten -- and still, that was somehow another lifetime ago.
But since I have been there and done that, I felt I needed to impart some of my prior knowledge of all I did experience during my own school years.
Here are five pieces of wisdom to help my future 2028 graduate:
1. Read, read, read.
I know you are just beginning to learn how to read, having tried out your alphabet sounds and sight words, too. But as you become more comfortable with decoding larger and more challenging words, my one grand wish is that you learn not only to do this, but also to enjoy all that comes with the wide, vast world of books -- because reading will most certainly open all sorts of new worlds that you couldn't even begin to imagine. Trust me when I say that being literate is a highly attractive quality to possess for future successes.
2. Never stop learning.
Along the lines of reading, I hope you will find greater pleasures in continually learning in general -- through everything from the most mundane and smallest tasks to the very grandest that you will be asked to perform throughout your school-aged years. Please understand that you might not always grasp certain concepts when they are first introduced to you, and will indeed make your fair share of mistakes. As they say, if at first you don't succeed, try, try again -- because learning and practice certainly can and will make perfect.
3. Be a leader.
Even though it is truly OK to make mistakes, friends and peers will still test you at every turn. But I can't stress enough that you should try to be a leader and not a follower, as much as possible. Using your brain is a beautiful thing. See, you are a smart and creative thinker, and I hope you will march to the beat of your own drum. This will apply especially as you get older, and in your teen years. Just because a friend or even the supposed "cool kids" are doing something, that doesn't mean you have to as well, because quite often you may find yourself in over your head, trying to do something that you aren't comfortable doing or that just might get you in a world of trouble. As my mother always said, if all the other kids were jumping off the Brooklyn Bridge, would you? As crazy as it sounded to me, trust me, it makes sense.
4. Believe in yourself.
Have faith and be courageous, too. You, my sweet, dear child, are capable of going to the moon and back. You already have me in your corner, but still, I hope you will allow yourself to be brave enough to strive for all you can do -- and be proud of all you do achieve.
5. Think before you act.
As much as I want you to have self-confidence, I still want you to remember that one wrong move could have disastrous consequences. Please try to remember this when you are on top of the world, thinking you are invincible. Don't get me wrong -- I want you to be excited for all the possibilities -- but still remember that you can get hurt badly, or harm others, too, if you don't think before you act or speak. Simply put, try not to open your mouth and insert your foot too often.
When all else fails, please know that I couldn't love you more -- ever -- and I am so very proud of you always.
A version of this article originally appeared on Confessions of A Mommyaholic.