No one remembers graduation speeches—sometimes not even the speaker. And post-graduation advice is rarely welcomed. But I’m weighing in anyway and hope that something resonates with my graduate and yours.
1. You will always be the correct weight.
2. Don’t fill out questionnaires anonymously.
3. Someone once told me that boys are like buses. You miss one and another one eventually comes along. Don’t think about anyone that way.
4. To be discerning is not the same as being judgmental.
5. Study with empathy. Otherwise you learn nothing.
6. Love your children more than anyone, including your parents.
7. Some fool down the line will tell you that you are not the prettiest in the room. Trust me you will always be the most beautiful in the world.
8. When you are scared, remember that you are most afraid of being afraid.
9. Don’t be afraid of passion. It’s the electricity of the soul.
10. Don’t listen to someone who tells you to get over it. You will get over it in your own way and your own time.
11. Think three-dimensionally: no one is completely heroic or totally villainous.
12. Picasso said I never paint red—I paint the suggestion of red. Remember that when you’re solving a particularly thorny problem
13. If a sign says that a parking lot is full, move the cone anyway and go in. I promise you there will always be a space.
14. When you are very upset talk to G-d. Out loud. You’ll get over the initial awkwardness.
15. Remember that a coincidence is a miracle in which G-d chooses to remain anonymous.
16. Don’t be frivolous with money. But don’t be afraid to spend it either.
17. Work hard.
18. Work steadily.
19. Have fun.
20. Don’t worry if you’re not having fun. It’ll pass.
21. When you feel stuck or frightened, dance.
22. Don’t regret falling in love. There’s a piece of Jewish wisdom that says there is nothing more whole than a broken heart.
23. I’ll end with one of my father’s favorite sayings: G-d made the world, but the Dutch made Holland. I have to admit that baffled me as a child, but I think I get it now. Give G-d something to work with by shaping your destiny because in the end it’s all about free will, kiddo.