the walk

Photo taken by me. California State University, East Bay, 2019.

this is the moment
most people dream about.
a moment most are unable to attain;
a moment most have worked tirelessly to achieve.
a moment often taken for granted.

loved ones sit idly by and applaud
speech after speech,
name after name,
as students come up one by one
to receive a piece of paper.

but to the students
who have remained inspiringly strong throughout the years,
who have fought against the odds,
or who have experienced life’s lowest lows;
they should all be certain of one thing:

it is more than just a piece of paper.
it is more than just a walk across the stage.

it is the culmination
of blood, sweat, and tears shed at night
fulfilling every essay prompt,
studying every footnote,
and recalling every professors’ lectures verbatim.

for some superstars specifically, this is all achieved
while working forty plus hours a week,
while caring for children,
while struggling to make ends meet,
or while fighting a physical or mental breakdown.

this is more than just a piece of paper.
this is more than just a walk across the stage.

this is the reminder that
you deserve to feel proud of every accomplishment,
you can achieve any goal you put your mind to,
your strengths can overpower your weaknesses,
and you are destined for greatness.

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