Graduation times 3 – twice

Graduation times 3 – twice

Triplets Ben, Abby and Jake Drezek, from left, stand with Emily, Nick and Sara Mathers, also triplets, who will graduate from Cumberland High School this year. This marks the siblings’ last graduation together. The Drezeks and Mathers were born just a handful of days apart. (Breeze photo by Brittany Ballantyne)
Two sets of triplets at CHS will walk the stage at PPAC in June

CUMBERLAND – Two sets of triplets will graduate together on Monday, June 12, when the Cumberland High School Class of 2017 takes the stage at the Providence Performing Arts Center.

The Mathers trio – Emily, Nick and Sara – and the Drezek triplets – Ben, Abby and Jake – all 18, met as children when they played youth soccer in town. The Mathers were born Jan. 2, 1999, and the Drezeks entered the world just a few days later, on Jan. 16.

Fast-forward to this year, and the triplets laugh about their childhood days that each of the teens described as “chaos,” and talk about how life after high school will be dramatically different without each other – that is, aside from Abby and Ben Drezek, who are both attending University of Massachusetts Lowell to study physical therapy.

They currently share the exact same schedule at CHS, and work together at Dave’s Marketplace.

Each set of triplets shared many of the same classes growing up, which they said, laughing, comes in handy when tasked with group projects.

“It’s also fun walking in, and never knowing what name they’re going to call you,” Jake Drezek said, though neither the Drezeks nor the Mathers are identical triplets.

Jake Drezek said he and his siblings have “triple-lethopy,” and frequently have the same thoughts cross their minds.

A few times a week, Sara and Emily Mathers walk downstairs before heading out for school, only to discover they’re wearing the same outfit.

Sara describes her siblings as “best friends you live with,” and said while they sometimes argue, “I wouldn’t be me without them.”

When the triplets disagree, arguments are tough, Abby Drezek said.

It’s “never a fair fight,” she said.

Being a triplet certainly has its challenges, the Drezeks and Mathers said, like sharing a car. Each of the CHS seniors plays sports, ranging from soccer, track and basketball to cross country, and participates in other school clubs. Work comes first when using the vehicles, the teens explained.

The Drezeks and Mathers also handle high school dance pictures a bit differently than their classmates. Triplet pictures come first, then the trios leave to meet up with their friends.

Luckily for the triplets this year, most seniors take prom photos at the Cumberland Monastery, making it one stop for their parents.

Last week, sitting around a table at CHS, the triplets joked that they’ve never done a “sibling swap” for prom, as the Drezek triplets are made up of two boys and a girl, while the Mathers trio represents two girls and a boy.

Particularly significant this year is graduation, the triplets said, for more reasons than one.

“We’re going to have this big moment, and we’ll all be experiencing it together,” Emily Mathers said.

“It’ll be good to know that I have Nick and Sara right behind me,” she said. Emily will be the first to walk the stage at graduation, as her first name comes first alphabetically.

She’s heading off to Curry College in the fall to study elementary education, her brother Nick will attend Mount Ida College for forensic science and criminal justice and Sara plans to study nursing at Rhode Island College.

Ben and Abby Drezek said they’ll miss their brother Jake, who will attend University of Rhode Island for doctoral pharmacy.

“We’ve been together for 18 years,” Emily Mathers said, adding that this transition will be the first time they’re not living with each other, or even seeing one another every day.

Nick Mathers had some advice for his two sisters as they head out to college: “Stay safe, because I don’t want to see any of you guys get hurt.”

The Drezeks and Mathers still have some figuring out to do when it comes to visiting one another, attending each other’s games and when they’ll travel back home for holidays.

The CHS seniors also talked about the big changes graduation means for their parents, going from a house with three children to none. It’ll be much quieter at home, they said.

Being a triplet is more than just a talking point, or a “fun fact,” Nick Mathers said.

“It’s rough, it’s crazy, it’s chaotic, but it’s something that I wouldn’t give up,” he said.