The Class of 2020 – When I learned Governor Whitmer stated a couple of months ago that it’s “very unlikely” schools will re-open for the rest of the 2019/2020 school year, I felt a great loss for my Class of 2020 son and the rest of his classmates.
Spring break, a fun part-time job, parties, dating, hanging out with friends, and prom… My son will have none of these things.
DISCLAIMER I – I understand that many lives and almost everyone’s way of living during the Covid-19 public health crisis has been greatly affected. I am not trying to diminish what everyone is going through as we try to “flatten the curve”. I just feel that sometimes our kids get a little lost in the shuffle.
The Class of 2020
But first, the Class of 1989…
Spring time, Senior year of High School. When I was a Senior in High School a million years ago… I had a glorious, PG-13 rated (sometimes R-Rated) Spring Break in Clearwater Beach, FL with 3 friends I still love and I still think about.
We saved our money for gas & hotel for Spring Break with our part-time jobs. Mine job was more fun than work. I worked at Pizza Hut with more friends. After our shifts, we’d hang out and wait for our other Pizza Hut friends to get off of work, then go bowling together or just “drive around”. It might not sound like heaven on earth to you… but compared to what kids do now, it was a blast.
Our class, like most all the classes before us and most all of the classes after us, we looked forward to prom. If you didn’t go to prom, there were high school parties. Something about enduring a long Michigan Winter has always made the Spring & the Summer times in Michigan so much more fun. You can go ahead and add 5x to that statement if you are 17 years old.
In my school, Seniors that had completed all their educational requirements were even allowed to leave early. For most of my class, school was out at 11:45a and we’d be screeching our tires on our way to the beach at 11:46a in those warm days before Graduation Day.
Lastly, we had Senior Skip Day, where about 40% of our class took a random day in mid-May and made it an unsanctioned trip (sans adults) to Cedar Point. Our school credits had been earned, how much trouble could we possibly get in for skipping?
My Class of 2020 son has/will have none of these things – except Senior Skip Day… which I guess is every day… minus Cedar Point.
The Class of 2020 was literally conceived and born during our fears post 9/11. It’s almost like they’ve been prepared for some kind of a burden like this.
My son is handling and has handled all of this like a champ and I couldn’t be more proud. The problem is… I literally don’t think he even knows “what he’s missing out on”. I don’t have the heart to tell him. This entire experience has made me so appreciative that I grew up during the period I grew up in. I had no idea then how great I had it. I guess sometimes “ignorance is bliss” in that regard.
As a parent, it’s natural to want to give your children everything you didn’t have when you were growing up. Now, I want to give them what I DID have growing up. I’d gladly sacrifice all my Class of ’89 memories so my son could have at least a few of those for the Class of 2020.