Work Hard, Be Kind

Peg Breen: May 10, 20122 Comments

How many of you have a daughter or son graduating from college this month?  Well, me too.  Can you believe it?! 

A minute ago we were ... 

Me and my son Patrick in September 2010

     Dropping them off at the dorm

     Mailing them chocolate chip cookies before finals

     Texting them on the weekends with no response

     Hoping they’d come home for Thanksgiving and finding out they went to Padre Island

     Sending them money because they overdrew their bank account

     Praying they’ll drive home safe from the game

     Worrying about their recovery from appendicitis

     Hearing the excitement in their voice about an interview


Laughing at how they sold their big screen TV on Craig’s list and accepted a check instead of cash

Advising not to go to Craig-list-guy’s house to beat him up because the check bounced

Listening to them say “we’re moving in together”

Wondering how we ever raised such grounded, smart, funny, wonderful kids 

I hope your sons and daughters are incredibly blessed as they start their life-journey and find their passion.    I’m not sure what I’ll say to Patrick on the big day. I might just borrow Conan O’Brien’s advice from his 2010 commencement address at Dartmouth  – “Work hard, be kind, and amazing things will happen.”

2 responses to Work Hard, Be Kind


I'm pratically in tears reading your blog. My son actually graduates from high school in June. It's a hard thing letting go. I wonder sometimes how's he going to make it without me? We've actually talked him in to staying in Fresno for college for at least 2 years. We convinced him that it's the fiancially wise thing to do. With some relutance...he agreed. I know my husband and I have raised a wonderful young man. I must know...does the worrying ever stop? My husband is a police officer, and I believe I worry even more because of that. Any advice on making this transition easier for ME?

Mom to Mom Advice

Great question! I'm certainly not an expert at this- having only "practiced my parenting on one son..... But I can tell you what has helped me.... 1) Talk to your friends and family..... I often pick up he phone and do my worrying out loud. It's very cheap therapy 2). Keep talking to your son... It's sort of surprising how often I hear that intense silence that means he's really hearing me. It feels great when he finally acknowledges that I "get him". 3). Give up the control- easier said than done, I know..... But I usually say a prayer of thanks and one of gratitude and I feel calmer. Hang in there and enjoy seeing him launch the next phase of his life! Peg

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