This is a fun and exciting time in life. To watch our first born spread his wings and take off into the adventures of life is hugely rewarding. I am beyond proud of him. He is determined and driven, and that coupled with responsibility will take him far in his life plans. I think he was a little afraid of this time in his life, and I know I had my own concerns, but now that we are finally here I think that we have both taken a deep breath and realize how entirely do-able this is.
Today marks the end of week three of school and in that time he has discovered a passion for engineering. His major is a two year A.A.S. degree in Industrial Electrical Maintenance, which includes engineering and electric circuits classes and labs, both of which he excitedly talks about every.single.day that he has those classes. But the engineering has captured his full attention to the point I have reminded him that he can always change his major if he wants to.
To be honest, I think that as a homeschooler he was unsure of himself, his education and his ability to keep up on a college level, and earlier this year he went through this phase of resenting having been homeschooled. He feared holes in his education that would set him back so far that he would painfully struggle for his college years, and I wonder if he thought that he wouldn't even be able to finish. I think that those can be very normal fears for many homeschoolers. They've never really had the opportunity to compare themselves against their peer group, which is both a good thing and a bad thing, but when that time finally comes it can be overwhelming and fearful for them. I took his words in stride and tried to remind him of the bigger picture, but you know...he kind of knew more than me, because teenagers are like that.
Fall sets in, dry leaves have started to sprinkle the long windy road to the top of the mountain and we begin to settle into some kind of new normal. I often find myself thinking this time last year and trying to remember what exactly I was doing then, where exactly we were in our journey with Finn, and all I can remember is the fragmented feeling of being torn between two worlds and that I was still trying to figure out how to love beyond my own fear, beyond guarantees, beyond the circumstances, and then I ask myself if I did, if I did learn how to love beyond myself and anything I had ever known - and I answer yes, and I think if I only did one thing, I did that, and that's huge to me because I so wanted to love him in a complete way, and yet I so feared it.
Soup. I'm looking forward to hot soup. And homemade bread. And children spread out around the dinning room table doing school. And Columbus coming home with stories from school. And slow winter days that end with piles of children and blankets snuggled on the couch. And to whatever comes next...