Life's happiest moments are just moments - but that's why they're worth relishing

Graduation Issue

To those who have not yet graduated high school, I ask you to read the following letter about cherishing the joyful moments in life.

These four years at school may seem insignificant and inconsequential. But as a graduating senior I assure you that high school will not only prepare you academically, it will teach you that life inevitably passes by — you must savor every moment of happiness you come across.

Every life has periods of pure joy and genuine happiness. The sources of that joy may vary, the feeling may be brief or long-lasting — but the experience of bliss is universal.

When I think about the joy I got from high school, I think about school plays and musicals, the dances and student government. I think about performing stand-up at the school talent shows, those lunchtime conversations with friends that made my stomach hurt from laughing so hard. All of these are memories that will make me miss my time in high school.

However, these moments, no matter how much you cherish them and how permanent they feel, will come to an end. Always. Good things come to an end.

This, however, is not a message of discouragement and sorrow to those listening, but instead a letter to those who feel that their lives are slipping away, that the good times are fading into the abyss of the past. Yes, these moments are temporary, yes, they will only live on as memories, but, ultimately, that's the best part.

By accepting that these moments are momentary, it allows you to truly experience them. If our lives were neverending moments of joy, our existence wouldn't have meaning.

Instead, encountering these temporary times of happiness and seeing them pass is what keeps humans truly alive. As Black Panther actor Chadwick Boseman writes: "You have to cherish things in a different way when you know the clock is ticking, you are under pressure."

In other words, ecstasy, by its very nature, is fleeting. So cherish every second of it.

Go to those dances, dress up for spirit week, and attend those football games. When you're leaving that high school in a cap and gown wondering where the time went, you'll be glad that you did. ♦

Story Time at The Carrousel @ Riverfront Park

Third Friday of every month, 11 a.m. Continues through Aug. 19
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