a note to the class of 2016

All lowercase titles. It's the next big thing just you watch
  1. I was with you a year ago
  2. We grew up together, played together, learned together
  3. Some of you are almost as old as me, and the only reason you're still in high school is because your parents decided to send you a year later
  4. So I feel like I know you well enough to speak honestly to you
  5. High school is not the best years of your life
  6. There are so many more beautiful paths that are opened up to you after high school ends
  7. Some of you may find that out this summer
  8. For some it will take until you have kids of your own
  9. So don't freak out if you're not having as much fun as you think you should be
  10. Having fun is not a contest
  11. And if it was, going out every night and getting plastered doesn't mean you're winning
  12. So stay at home some nights, curl up under a blanket, and watch The Mary Tyler Moore Show with your parents
  13. This can be a hard time for them
  14. They love you and for the first time ever, they won't see you every day, or even every week
  15. And after you leave, call them sometimes, okay?
  16. Please be safe this summer
  17. If you drink, please find a designated driver
    If you're near Sheboygan County, WI, you can call me at any time of night and I'll pick you up
  18. I've already buried one friend because of alcohol this year, and I don't want to lose any of you
  19. I'd love to just tell you not to drink, but I'm not naïve.
    (maybe I am just a little)
  20. If you're scared for what happens next year, don't worry
  21. Things always have a way of working out the way that they're supposed to, even if it's not quite the way you'd expect them to
  22. There are lots of adventures waiting for you out there
  23. Some of them will be beautiful and some will be terrifying
  24. Be strong
  25. Never lose hope
  26. I believe in you
  27. And don't forget to write, you hear?