Has it really been two weeks since I’ve posted? There was a time (even during tax season) where I managed to post something almost every day. Either my time management skill have dropped off considerably, or I just don’t have as much to say. It certainly isn’t that I’ve lost interest.
I’ve been working 6 days a week, which doesn’t leave much time for other things. But trust me, other things still happen.
One of the big things that happened, quite unexpectedly, was that Oldest Son has just landed a great job. Today, at 6am, he heads off to Alabama to start his first assignment. Just like that.
He’s quite the adventurer. He has a genius IQ, but pretty much just can’t do school. He had a full scholarship to a great private college, but after the first semester slipped back into his middle school/high school patterns of not doing his school work.
He used to meet people online, and would drive or hop onto planes to meet them in person. He loves hanging out in big cities and exploring new restaurants and seeing new sights. He has made friends all over the world.
He joined the military. While many people struggle through the rigors of basic training, he embraced the challenges. He grew stronger and more focused. I sensed a calmness and sense of purpose I hadn’t noticed in him before. He’d often talked about joining the military when he was younger, but we were skeptical. He was not the most athletic person, either in interest or ability. Yet he shined.
His year in Iraq was scarier for us than it was for him. He’s much stronger than we give him credit for. He made friends with Iraqi soldiers, enjoyed the local foods, and witnessed first hand that most of the people there were gracious and appreciative. He has pictures of the Iraqi kids playing just like our kids do. He gave me another perspective on issues I don’t fully understand.
The military can be frustrating, though. The bureaucracy drives you nuts. Getting the things that were promised when enlisting turns out to be a paper chase. Promises aren’t kept. When one observant soul learned of Oldest Son’s aptitude, he wanted to send him to the Defense Language Institute. After getting our hopes up, that didn’t pan out. After volunteering to deploy to Haiti to help after the earthquake, he was disappointed to learn that they cut back on the troops to be sent. But…had he been there, he would not have been around to accept this new job.
And being in the military helped him land this job. He met someone who worked with him in Iraq and knew first-hand how much knowledge Oldest Son has, even without his college degree. It provided him the security clearances required to get the job. And although this job may not be for everyone, since it will send him to places all around this great big country, it is a dream job for Mr. Adventurer. He doesn’t even mind hanging out in airports!
Right now, the house is empty and quiet. But it’s not lonely. Big Daddy and I have done our job and we’re happy to see the kids move on to bigger and better things. It’s the way things are supposed to be.