There are many big moments in life (you know, playing cello for Yo-Yo Ma), and many big decisions to make, (such as which college you want to attend), but wisdom grows out of the small moments, what may seem like insignificant decisions at the time, the decisions you make when no one’s watching, when you think it doesn’t matter, when you think no one will really care.
Sometimes the smallest decision becomes a defining moment, you may never know until after you’ve made the decision, like the day you decide to wait for your daughter instead of going grocery shopping alone, a decision that led to a routine that created invaluable memories for us both. You look back on those small decisions and you say, “I’m glad I decided to do that,” or another time you might think, “I wish I had said something when I had the chance.” If you can live in these small moments, recognize the significance of these small moments, and learn from these small moments your chance for developing wisdom increases tremendously.
Rachel, you are a “noticer”. You are a very present person—authentic, grounded and engaged—and you know how to recognize the significance of the small moment. As you leave your small house and your small town to study at your big school, may you continue to recognize and live in those small moments and come back to us forever wiser from your experience.
Congratulations as you graduate from high school. Already you have distinguished yourself in so many remarkable ways and you are wise well beyond your years.