Even though it has been a long and transformative five and a half years since the much anticipated night I walked across the stage at the Lone Star Park to receive my high school diploma, there are moments it feels as if it were just yesterday that high school happened; that I was rushing through the green and white hallways of Arlington High School trying to make it on time for my AP English Class. It cannot be that long ago that myself together with other student representatives of my high school senior class sat down to put together a list of songs seniors would vote on for our high school graduation song.  Although I cannot exactly recall the small details of what happened that day, whether we were in the StuCo (Student Council) room or somewhere else, all I know today is that the song “My Wish” by Rascal Flatts was the perfect choice for the vibrant, diverse and very idealistic Arlington High School Graduating Class of 2007! I will never forget what that song meant to all of us as eighteen year olds ready to experience what life had to offer and ready as well as eager to be impactful and live our dreams.

As I write this, I am sitting at the center of the international capitol of the world surrounded by some of the most powerful international and financial institutions learning what it means to make a difference and trying to live which my eighteen-year-old self would be proud of. While reflecting back as well as looking forward, I am proud of my peers and what they have thus far accomplished, as well as anxious about what all of us, about what our generation, is going to do and how it is that we are going to manage to leave glimpses of hope and to make decisions that are going to positively influence people everywhere. I am excited to look back one day and recognize how it is that all of us lived up to the wishes and dreams we had for ourselves individually; and those we had for our whole generation. Today, my wish for my peers and I remains the same. As we continue to live this life that is so graciously given to us, and as we learn more about the persons that we have been called to be, my wish is that we continue to allow our dreams to live within us and to shine before us. And that as we learn and grow through moments past and decisions made, it gets that much easier for us to reach out, grab, and live out the best versions of our dreams. In the good ol words of Rascal Flatts:

I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow,

And each road leads you where you want to go,

And if you’re faced with a choice, and you have to choose,

I hope you choose the one that means the most to you.

And if one door opens to another door closed,

I hope you keep on walkin’ till you find the window,

If it’s cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile,

But more than anything, more than anything,

My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,

Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,

You never need to carry more than you can hold,

And while you’re out there getting where you’re getting to,

I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,

Yeah, this, is my wish.

I hope you never look back, but ya never forget,

All the ones who love you, in the place you left,

I hope you always forgive, and you never regret,

And you help somebody every chance you get,

Oh, you find God’s grace, in every mistake,

And you always give more than you take.