To catch up, read wedidit! (part one) here!
Yale has two commencement ceremonies — one for the University and a separate one at each of its many schools. I experienced the University commencement when I graduated and knew it was nothing that Nate would enjoy. So we decided that Nate and I would skip it and join Chad at the School of Management where he would receive his actual diploma. We all woke up bright and early on Monday morning. Chad suited up and Nate and I dropped him off at the School of Management, where he donned his cap and gown and had breakfast with his classmates. Nate and I headed back home to watch some Curious George and pack our bag for the rest of the day.
What was most fabulous is that Yale aired the University graduation live on the internet so Nate and I actually didn’t miss a thing, including Chad walking in through the gates.
Once the University commencement began, Nate and I jumped into the car. I live streamed the ceremony as we drove to stay tuned to the event but also to make sure that we were entering downtown New Haven before 5,000 people decided to disperse throughout the city.
Nate and I lucked out and found an awesome parking space but it was far enough away from Chad’s school that I needed to bring the stroller. That was a blessing in disguise. I filled the stroller’s basket with snacks and activities for the day (we went through all of them!) and it was wide enough that Nate felt like he had personal space while in crowds.
We got to the School of Management well before Chad did. In fact, we got there before anyone else! Though we had our pick of seats, Nate and I chose the back row. It was the least crowded in terms of seat spacing and gave me an easy out in case Nate decided he was done with the affair. It was also the perfect spot because Chad easily saw us when he got to the building and came in to say hello before he lined up. As you can see, Nate was very excited to see his dad.
Chad went back inside and all the way to the top of the building where the 300+ graduates managed to get themselves in alphabetical order. This was the first commencement in their new building. It’s a clear glass square with a grassy courtyard in the middle, which is where graduation took place. This picture is the view in front of us; Chad is actually standing above us in line.
Once commencement started, we realized that the back row was the place to be, too, because Chad and friends processed right past us.
I have to admit, I knew this was going to be a long day but I didn’t really think about how long. When I graduated from the Drama School, there were 60 of us. There were more than 300 students in Chad’s program. At the Drama School, the Dean gives a brief speech. At the School of Management, there were speeches by three students, the Dean, and a professor, and then a student a capella performance. Before we got through speech number two, Nate was toast. He had been sitting in his stroller for two hours and he wanted to be free. So we quietly wheeled ourselves out of the courtyard and took the elevator to the fourth floor where Nate could play to his heart’s content. Meanwhile, I could still see commencement through the glass walls but, unfortunately, couldn’t hear a thing.
After playing for a while, we took the stroller tour of the building and went down to the second story. It might as well have been called a day care. Parents with toddlers everywhere. When I arrived, one mom was changing her kid’s diaper on the ridiculously expensive leather benches. It was clear the kids were done, the parents were done — everyone was done. Hurry up and give out all the diplomas already.
Finally, it was Chad’s turn to take the stage. I got this shot from the 2nd story through the glass window. You can’t really tell but, trust me, that’s my husband and there is a diploma in that folder.
My friends, I cannot tell you how much joy it brings me to tell you this — wedidit.