Newsletter editor Lily here.

I’m heading back to my hometown of Jacksonville, Florida for the third time in four months for my little brother’s graduation.

Events like high school graduations are bittersweet because they show the passage of time. When I walked across the same stage my brother will seven years ago, my parents weren’t officially divorced, both of my grandmas were there, my aunt and uncle were present, and Obama was still in his first term. Now, for a variety of reasons, there’s a slightly smaller crowd attending my brother’s graduation. There were some questions around if my dad’s partner would attend. My surviving grandma is in poor health and logistically trying to figure out how to make a cross-country trip one last time. Trump is president.

But at the same time, there’s a lot to celebrate with the passage of time. My brother has had to overcome a lot of adversity to even get to this point—he was kicked out of four preschools due to behavioral issues caused by undiagnosed ADHD, almost enrolled in special ed classes because he failed the standardized tests (again, thanks to undiagnosed ADHD), and has dealt with his fair share of bullying and racism as an Asian person (kids are cruel), just to name a few challenges. And yet, here he is: About to graduate high school with first honors and head off to Skidmore College as their top swim recruit. I remember sitting at my brother’s elementary school graduation seven years ago and my mom turning to me and saying, “We’re ONNNLLYYY at his elementary school graduation?!?!” Somehow, that time flew by.

But just as important as the graduate himself, I think this graduation is a day to celebrate my mom. She made this happen, 100%. It’s her day too. My brother and I were both really hard kids to raise in our own ways and she had to do most of it by herself. But now, we’re both adults who stayed out of trouble, are generally self-sufficient and our eat vegetables (uh, for the most part). She got it done.

So, happy almost graduation day to my little brother Miles. But especially happy almost graduation day to my Mama Bear, who is also my hero, my best friend, and my favorite person.

Today’s new questions on Chairman Mom:

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