When I graduated from the University of Arizona in December 1989, I could not have imagined arriving at today. I wasn’t thinking about having kids at all at that time – or not having them.
My dad said an odd thing to me the day I graduated. He told me it was the happiest day of his life. I remember wondering, “What about the day you got married? Or the day I was born? Or Corina was born?” Perhaps those had been happy at their time, but according to him, my university graduation was even more important to him. It wasn’t until I started considering his comment for this post that it occurred to me that it was probably the genesis for my caring about being considered intelligent. Other people are flattered to be considered pretty, funny, or athletic. For me, the height of compliments always has been to be thought of as smart.
Two things about this December 1989 graduation: it was at my informal graduation party when I first really connected with Tony, Eric’s birthfather. He surprised me by showing up at all, and brought me a Boston Celtics shot glass as a gift. Telling, in many ways, now that I look back on it. And now, 24 years later, our son is graduating today from Northeastern University with a degree in Civil/Environmental Engineering. Even if it was in spite of himself, I’m sure Tony would be a proud dad, if he knew.
I’m not there – but I will be in New Jersey later this month for the graduation party. In the meantime, we’ll toast Eric tonight, proud as hell to be in the orbit of this very special kid.
Laura Orsini is an author, speaker, and consultant who coaches other authors to make and market exceptional books that change the world for the better. She is birthmother to Eric, who is finishing college in Boston this summer. Their adoption has been open for the better part of Eric’s life. She continues to toy with the idea that these posts will one day become a book. In the meantime, you can learn about her novel in progress, Stan Finds Himself on the Other Side of the World.