Posted by: brookenado | June 8, 2013

A toast to the road ahead, and a tip of the hat to the path behind

Dear readers,

I’ve been meaning to get another post out, but couldn’t decide on what to post about right away.  But then again, I did mention a graduation post so I do suppose I should start there.

The graduation at Miami was very nice, however, the weather decided to take a turn for the worse.  Two days before the ceremony is was warm and nice out, everything was great!  And then it rained that night.  And if you live in the Midwest, you know what that means.  The weather turned over and it got cold.  It was mid May and once more in the low 50s!

Yeah this is pretty much how I felt about that.

Well, first of all I have to just say thank you to all of my family that sat through the graduation outside at the football stadium.  It was such a fun time being together with everyone, and meant a lot to have you there.  Secondly, let me assure you that it was no less cold on the turf field in my graduation gown!

Here we go!

Here we go!

Weather aside, it was a wonderful affair.  The speaker was extremely admirable and sent a message that could resonate with everyone.  His name is Wil Haygood, he is a writer for the Washington Post and an author, and a fellow graduate of Miami University.  Haygood spoke to us about his story of success, though he told it as a story of failure.

"To think that in such a place, I led such a life."

“To think that in such a place, I led such a life.”

As a boy he tried out for his middle school basketball team and didn’t make the cut.  In high school he tried out again with the same result.  At Miami he tried for the club team, and still he didn’t make it.  However, he did play on every one one of those basketball teams.  How?  He asked for a second chance.

Mr. Haygood went up to each coach after being cut and asked for another chance to try out.  All three coaches agreed to let him have another go, and you know what?  He ended up being as much a part of those teams as the kids who made it the first time.  A second chance, while it seems such a simple thing, can make such a difference.

The guy doing the sort of thinking pose is Mr. Wil Haygood.

The guy doing the sort of thinking pose is Mr. Wil Haygood.

Again, he was given a second chance when he was about to be fired from his menial job.  He asked to write an essay, so he stayed up all night and wrote for his job.  Well, the essay didn’t get him his job back, but it did give him the push he needed to follow his passion.  His boss (while firing him) told him that he was surely in the wrong profession, and that if that essay was anything to go by, he should be a writer.

Second chances, I believe, are an integral part of human nature because it is something we can all relate to.  Hasn’t there been a time in your life that you were cut from a team, declined for that position, missed out on an opportunity, or made a mistake?  Think of a time when someone, anyone, gave you another chance because they believed in you.  And now, maybe you yourself have given another person a second chance because you were given one, even if you hardly new them.

Obligatory jumping picture

Obligatory jumping picture

Shared experiences are a powerful thing.  Wil Haygood was a beautiful speaker, and I felt his message deeply as an aspiring writer myself.  Yes, I will fail in my writing pursuits.  But I hope that somewhere down the line I will be given more than one chance and that I am brave enough to ask for it.  It will be a struggle – but then again, it’s the struggle that makes us who we are.  So here’s to a hard road ahead of us!  To boarding the bus.  Let us always have faith in ourselves and others on our journey to succeed.

Congratulations to all fellow 2013 graduates out there.  Thank you Miami for a wonderful four years and thank you parents for providing me with the opportunity for those years to happen!

Thanks mom and dad, my fellow Miami graduates!

Thanks mom and dad, my fellow Miami graduates!

Now then, I think I do happen to have some material in mind for the next post.  I know it’s been a year but there are still a few stories and photos to share from my time spent abroad (What?  Ridiculous, I know).  Thanks for reading, cheers!  Until then…

Mischief managed

Of course there would be zero mischief managed without my siblings as well!

Of course there would be zero mischief managed without my siblings as well!

Wil Haygood did the research and wrote the article that inspired this film.  Before he spoke we saw the preview for “The Butler”, and I have to share it because it looks amazing:



  1. What a great graduation it was! A truly memorable speaker and I have been to several; but, this really was one of of the best. Don’t we all deserve
    second chances throughout our living experiences? I already am looking forward to seeing “THE BUTLER” as it opens this weekend. I know you will be successful at wherever your life leads you. Remember, it may not be the first choice of what you want, but it is a step forward in gaining experience toward the ultimate goal. Love you and good luck, — Grandma!!!

  2. Brookie ~ though I am late to read this, I LOVE this post!!! The “second chances” theme resonates with me on many planes. The photos are FAB! Again, Congratulation on your Graduation into the “real (?) world” 🙂

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