Some mamas dread this day.
I'm not sure what I'm feeling because it won't be the day
for which I'd been preparing myself.
I had expected our goodbye to take place in a small W. African capital city before he hopped on a plane with his daddy for a vacation in Ireland and then a return to Michigan.
Once back home in Michigan, he'd start working on his driver's license
and hopefully get a job working for one of the men in our sending church -
a "gap" year to earn some money and readjust to living in the States before we
sent him off to face the wolves... at college.
And for that whole year, I'd be far away, wondering how he was doing,
wishing I could talk with him...
But God changed those plans.
Brendan began to sense God's direction for his future - studying Environmental Science.
He worked hard in his classes, studied many times when he would have rather played,
scored well on those all important standardized tests...
and was offered some scholarship monies -
The school is near my old college stomping grounds.
There's even a young man from Niger also attending the school.
This so wasn't the original plan - but I'm really appreciating these changes.
First of all...I'm the one taking him.
It won't be a day -
but rather a week of orientation for both student and parent.
He's not an ocean and a desert and half a continent...
or a minimum of three plane rides... away.
He's only a day's drive distant.
He's studying something he's passionate about -
or at least as passionate as my pretty laid back boy generally gets.
And he's excited about this fresh start and meeting new people where the slate is clean.
He's hoping to find friends who love volleyball and Irish music, who think gaming is great, who want to discuss Arthurian legends and maybe give fencing a try, while still searching for ways to serve their community.
So I'm excited - I can't wait to watch and advise and encourage as he navigates this transition.
I'm looking forward to seeing him discover the campus, the other international students in his class, the team of people who are there to help him, and begin those first tastes of post-secondary school life.
And there's this canoe trip/photo op for parents the school keeps promising us!
So while I'm still sure that moment when I have to give him that first final hug goodbye
to start my trip back to Michigan and the rest of my brood
will be heartbreakingly hard - I really am more than okay.
I love this boy and I'm delighted with the plan God has given him.
If you think of us, or me -in the goodbye, please pray-
But more importantly,
please pray that God meets him there,
in this adjustment and
in this new phase of life
...in an unmistakable way.