By: Deirdre Littlefield
My first born son left for boot camp this week. He has been to college already so we have done this; I should have been ready.
I dig through pictures and remember him as a little boy. He was a wondrous little guy with bright blue eyes. His imagination was unsurpassed, always dressed in some wild outfit with a helmet to match.
Fast forward twenty years and Steven is the most caring person you could meet. It’s as if he was born to care for others and the earth. He has always been the kid to clean up litter without being asked or take his time untangling fishing line from the pond. I don’t think I could find somebody who doesn’t like him if I tried.
I am so proud that he is brave enough to follow this calling. I’m so happy that my son wants something bigger for his life and went off to find it. I’m worried too though. I’m afraid that he won’t come back, and I won’t get to enjoy him in my daily life. I know that’s selfish, but it’s true. Somehow, through the great oxymoron of parenting, I’m still glad he left.
We get one shot at this parenting thing—let that sink in if you have little ones. This is it, he’s gone. This path could take him anywhere in the world. I look back and am so thankful that we gave him a sense of humor. Goodness, is he funny. He can laugh at himself, and I know that will help get him through the tough times. He knows he is cherished and he knows God.
My job is done; I pray I did him well.