The past two weeks have kind of moved as a blur: first the death of my step-father and then graduation on Friday. Graduating college is definitely something to be proud of, and even though I'm technically graduating in the summer, I walked with my fellow friends. Mitch Albom spoke at my graduation; he wrote "Tuesdays with Morrie," "Five People You Meet in Heaven," and more. I had read Tuesdays with Morrie back in the day, but I didn't even remember what disease Morrie was dying from... when Mitch told the story at my graduation and said that his old professor who was so dear to his heart died from ALS, I felt my heart drop into my stomach. I tried to be strong... but I failed and started crying. My good friend Christen knew that I just had recently lost my father to ALS so she started hugging me and we joined hands. His speech was one of the most amazing things I've ever heard and I'll never forget it. I know it's weird to say, but I feel like that speech was meant for me. I was meant to hear it and when I did all I could think about was my step-father Greg and that comforting feeling that he was by my side. He wanted to be there for me... and he was. I miss him so much but I know he's in a better place. I'm actually reading a book right now called Heaven is for Real and oh my God it's amazing. It's about a four year old little boy named Colton who had a near-death experience and told his parents all about heaven and how wonderful it was. The book literally gives me chills when I read each page and it honestly gives me such warm feelings in my heart. I like knowing that heaven is out there and it's a beautiful place. Of course I've always believed and had faith, but my faith has definitely wavered these past few years. I know that's when you need to be strong, but it was hard for me when I saw Greg suffering the way he was. But heaven does exist and I know Greg is there and he's healthy and happy, with our loved ones who have passed. I will always remember my graduation as long as I will live. I'm so proud of myself because these years have been anything but easy, but I still accomplished my goal of getting a degree. College has definitely been the best time for my life and I'm happy to see what's in store for my future. Here are some pictures from graduation. My childhood friend Mike is in a lot of them because he graduated too; I've known him since first grade and our two mom's were friends in high school so it's this friendship that has lasted over the years! So special to me. His mother Nancy is the sweetest woman you'll ever meet (besides my mom of course) and she is also battling something that is beyond unfair: she's had cancer for 5 years and it won't leave her alone. I pray for her constantly and hope God sends life her wife. I also have a picture with my Pi Phi's that are in my pledge class - we've come a long way with one another. And then a picture of me and my closest cousin's Alaina and Nicole that I talk about a lot. Like I said... very special day and that is only a few pictures out of the millions!
Also wanted to send a shout out to my mom: "HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY MOMMY, you deserve a wonderful day more than anyone I know. You are my rock and my hero. You are an angel in my eyes. I love you."