I am so freaking happy!
My daughter, my amazing daughter, is living her dreams! She has the career she wanted, the job posting she wanted, her own apartment, her own car, a full social life, beautiful art she continuously creates, and she is getting her degree studying the language she loves. I. Am. So. Happy!
She has roommates of her own choosing, activities of her own choosing, romantic interests of her own choosing, and when she truly leaves our home- meaning all the way out of state, where we can't meet up for dinner or drop by to see her latest art project- she will have a well-paying job and can easily afford her own place, food, clothes, everything she needs. And she is looking forward to that new experience, not afraid of it.
I am deliriously happy!
You see I had none of those things.
I was on my own at eighteen, aged out of foster care. I had no car, no job, no family support, no hopes or dreams, other than to just make it through another day. Oh, and I feel compelled to add, I went to twelve years of public school. (That was for my cyber-friend and reader who claims that public school is the golden key to finding your place in this world.) My daughter was home schooled from birth until she went to college. She is living her dreams at an age that I was hanging on to a minimum wage job and praying my car would hold together. Too sweet.
My other "children"- my son's best friend and the daughter of a former friend of mine- are also living their dreams. I KNOW I had a hand in that too.
My son's best friend spent more time with me from middle school on than he did either of his own parents. His dad was home, but not exactly a nurturer, and his mom was working late hours bringing home the bacon. They are his parents, and they love him and of course support him. But I was there encouraging him to hold on to his dream until he had the courage to tell his parents what that dream was, since it did not match the plan they laid out for him. He did, and he excelled at it, and when he got an audition for an arts school, his parents were ready to listen. Being the wonderful people they are, they finally caught the vision, and he is excelling with their blessing and support. Booyah.
My former friend's daughter came to live with me for a semester. She was flunking math so her mom sent her to me for a semester, to help her catch up. She was easy to teach, and caught up and moved ahead quickly in math. But more important, she learned about love, forgiveness, and what real family support felt like. She is still considered a sibling by my two children! Her mom was telling her she was ugly, fat and would never make it. When she left our house, she knew better. Instead of returning to her mom's, when she left our house she went to live with her dad and his boyfriend. She is now a happy sophomore in a major East Coast university, and I saw her post a picture of her beautiful self in a bikini on a social network this summer. Live the dream, young friend!
Then there's my youngest. I love that kid! He was sharing a poet with me today- amazing stuff! He is such a deep thinker with such a big heart- both the poet and my son! (But mostly my son.=)
He has his first job and they love him! He is still doing school, so he applied for 10-20 hours a week, but it's always at least 20. He is a really good musician. When he was really young he played cornet, then baritone, but now it's electric bass. He has a duo with another home school friend of his, a sweet little vegetarian rocker who is in public school this year. (Incidentally, it was taking a Brit Lit class in my house that I facilitated that inspired her to go to the arts magnet school. I'm just inspiring like that. I wrote her recommendation letter. =)
In addition to his music, work and school, he also kick-boxes and does Tae Kwan Do. He beat his kick-boxing instructor in all three rounds the other day. He came home glowing that his instructor said he had taught him all he could. Since his instructor is ex-military, currently a police officer, that made the teen feel pretty good.
He applies to the local private university on Monday, and then he's applying for their biggest scholarship. I hope he wins. His big dream is to be a doctor, and I believe he will make it. He's always been an enthusiastic leader, starting with playing center on community league football when he was eight years old. He was the unofficial leader of his team of volunteers in Dominican Republic this summer, and made some lasting friendships there both with his public schooled peers and his college student sponsor.
Politically, he keeps me informed and opens my mind to new perspectives, which I love. Anyway, all my praying friends, keep him in your prayers next week. Also, he's trying to get a donation of shoes to the kids in the D.R., so pray for success there too. And my non-praying friends, just send good thoughts his way.
No time to edit this. I have to go to bed. I have a TON of school tomorrow! Goodnight!
Buddy Wakefield: Human the Death Dance