I looked down at my watch, it was 8am. I was still stuck inside the waiting area before my practical exam starts. I look around and I see some of classmates doing some last minute reading, others were reviewing each other with questions and some were already agitated because of the exam they're about to take. I was already agitated myself. You see this was not just an ordinary exam day for me. It was also Henry’s moving up day from kindergarten which was also scheduled at 8am. I didn’t want to miss this big day for my son. I wanted to be there for him.
It was a moving exam which means we had to take it by groups. I had already asked my professor in advance if I could go with he 1st group since my son was graduating. It was a great thing that she agreed. Thank you Dr. Alvarado!
At 9am, the exam was over and just in time. I looked at my phone and found a text from the husband. “The program is about to start”, it said. I thought, well great! I would still able to make it and maybe miss only the opening ceremony. I ran to the nearest bathroom and changed my clothes since I was still in my school uniform. Luck was on my side as I immediately got a cab.
On my way to the venue, the husband and I exchanged text messages. He gave me a blow-by-blow on what was going on during the ceremony. Henry had already performed twice, he recited a poem and had a song number with his classmates and I missed it. I felt like such a bad mother.
|Singing Put a little love in your heart|
I was 10 minutes away from the venue when I got a text that the giving of the diplomas was about to start. They were giving it by section and Henry’s class was going to be the 2nd to be called. I had time. Maybe I was going to see this one, I thought to myself. I was almost there anyway. I was getting nearer and nearer.
Finally, the cab stopped in front of the venue. And just when I was about to step out of the cab, my phone I heard my phone make a sound. It was a text message from my husband saying Henry had just received his diploma. I can’t believe I missed this as well.
I ran up to the auditorium just before they were about to sing the closing song. I went near the area where the graduates were and saw Henry. I saw him look back at me and gave me a wave. He had a big smile on his face and it was just so lovely to look at. I hope he did not notice that I was not present during the rest of the ceremony. I’m really glad I still made it even for just the final minutes.
|Family picture with our graduate. I'm still in my school shoes.|
Looking back on this day, I realised that I may not be always there for Henry, for his big moments. After all, it wasn’t just his graduation. Last year, I spent Christmas Eve and New Year’s day at the hospital, away from my family. As a young doctor, there are times when I will be on duty and I will be on call. I just hope that he will understand. I can’t promise that I will always be there but I promise that I will exhaust every means just to try to make it.