None of us could have imagined that our Class of 2020 high school (or college, for that matter) seniors would have ended their 13 years of school this way — e-learning at home under government orders due to a worldwide pandemic. Yet, here we are.
Many of them, understandably, feel a little cheated.
They will not have a prom.
They will not have their final spring sports seasons.
They will not have their Senior Nights for those sports seasons.
In Danville, our seniors will not have their traditional Senior Walk, dressed up in their caps and gowns, parading through the other schools in the district, waving to former teachers as younger students witness the fanfare that (typically) comes with an achievement as admirable as graduation.
They most likely will not have a graduation ceremony — at least not in the traditional sense.
Graduation open houses will have to be postponed — or, in cases like my son Gabe’s, might not even happen. While some students will be fortunate to be able to have their graduation parties in the summer, fall or winter — whenever our lives return to “normal,” after the virus (hopefully) has run its course — Gabe likely will have long left for his duty in the U.S. Army. He’s scheduled to leave for boot camp in mid-June.
It’s a shame, really. No one could have seen this coming, and no one could have prevented what is happening. Yet it’s still heartbreaking when your senior walks into the room, as mine did this week, on the day Governor Eric Holcomb announced that Indiana schools would be closed for the rest of the year, and sadly announces, “I had my last day of high school, and I didn’t even know it.”
It is sad. It’s a genuine loss — loss of the moments and memories that one usually carries with him or her for years after the days have passed.
It’s also a loss of an opportunity to share old photos and celebrate the end of a huge season of life, just as the next season begins. That traditional graduation open house I mentioned earlier? Seeing old photos, in my opinion, is the best part!
So rather than not share those photos at all, I encourage seniors and their parents to find ways to share those photos while maintaining our required social distancing — through social media, blogs or in novel ways.
It’s why I’ve revamped this old blog from years ago. I plan to schedule a post every day between now and when my son would normally have graduated from high school — May 29 — or longer.
I’ll share a lot of scrapbook pages, because that has been my preferred way of documenting memories related to my kids’ lives. But I’ll also share some favorite old photos that might not have made it into a scrapbook page, simply because I will never be “done” with all of the scrapbooking and favorite photos.
After graduation, I will share some of my other kids’ pages, as well as family memories and other photography and scrapbooking projects.
I hope you enjoy this photographic journey through Gabe’s childhood. I doubt I’ll post things in chronological order (that would take a lot of planning, to time it out just so!). I’ll just schedule a few posts at a time and see where it takes us.
First up, one of the layouts from Gabe’s sports album. A huge part of his life until recently has been his love for baseball, so it seems fitting to post a baseball layout first. Here, his eighth grade year.
(Did your child play this year for Danville, also? I would love to know! I don’t have a roster and have no idea who was on the team! Please share!)