As for the other question, how I feel. I lack an answer because of the fact that there are so many emotions tied to my graduation. First, there's relief, excitement, and other generally good emotions. I think I've been mentally finished with school for a couple semesters, so it feels good for my credit-hour total to catch up, even if it is a semester after my 4-year mark.
But opposite those "generally good" emotions are some "generally bad" ones, feelings of disappointment mostly. In college, I wasn't the honor student I was in high school. I could have been, but I wasn't. I settled for Cs when I could have worked my tail off for As or at least Bs. In high school, it was standard for me to be on the Distinguished Honor Roll every semester. I only hit Dean's List once in my 4.5 years of college -- that is unless I made it this semester too. Besides grades, I am often disappointed in myself because of the degree I feel I've "settled" for. I really wanted a BFA. But I let a professor stand between me and that degree and opted instead for a BA. And then there are other things, smaller, but still potent little goals that I failed to meet or even really reach for. Like the fact that I wanted to learn to play at least a few chords on guitar before I graduated. I think of all these things and feel like I've failed myself. Yes, I'm graduating college, but that was expected, expected by myself, my family, and probably anyone else who knows me.
I don't get depressed when I think about that, but I do get disppointed and feel that I haven't made any significant mark during these past 4 + years. But every once in a while I'm reminded that grades and titles and what letters will be on my diploma aren't what this is all about. Every once in a while I realize that I have made a couple marks at least these past years, and they're the kind that count, not the kind on school report cards. And those marks, have been reflexive. So, I have a few Thank Yous to make... (in no particular order besides what sounds best to me)...
JG, thank you for writing
MK, thank you for walks
RH, thank you for going to church with me
BH, thank you for your honesty
KE, thank you for sharing oreos and ramen
LL, thank you for being my sister
DC, thank you for being my "twin"
JM, thank you for your penny
JC, thank you for your patience
...and, of course, thank you to my parents for being wonderful... I am truly blessed.