Thursday, September 10, 2009

Support With No Reservations

Eight years ago tomorrow, my children's futures changed in ways that I still cannot even begin to imagine. Eight years ago, my oldest son was only 8 years old. Fully half of his life has been spent under a cloud of uncertainty regarding how life will be when he's grown. Eight years ago, he wasn't thinking beyond who to play with at recess, or where to sit at lunch. Today, he's spending more time thinking about just where his future will take him, and what direction he should take when he finally reaches that fork in the road that happens when you graduate from high school. He'll reach that fork, that moment when he has to make a choice on his destination, in two short--very short--years.

More and more often, Jock has been leaning towards a destination that travels right through some time spent in military service. The Marine Corps, specifically. Does he still want to play football? Absolutely. Does he still want to go to college? Definitely. Does he still want to choose SWAT police officer as his lifetime career? Beyond a doubt. Has he decided that the route through the Marine Corps is the best one to take him there? It is certainly beginning to look that way. He tells me that the Marines will pay for college. I know that. He tells me that he'll still be able to play football while he's enlisted. I'm not sure of the details, but I'm sure he'll figure something out on that score. He tells me that the training he'll get while in the Marines will prove invaluable when he enrolls in the Police Academy and takes the further steps of becoming a SWAT officer. I can't argue that point.

Am I 100%, with no reservations, comfortable with this particular life path that he could choose? That is a loaded question.

I have always, ALWAYS, supported my children in their decisions. Not only supported them, but actively encouraged them to make their own decisions based on information they, themselves, have gathered. I also have always, ALWAYS, been an active supporter of our military forces. Both my brothers have served in the military; one in the Army, one in the Navy. My dad was a Marine. Heck, when I was Jock's age, I was determined to join the Air Force.

Of course, when I was Jock's age the world wasn't in quite the same shape it is today.

I'm surprised, actually, at the difference it makes that he's my son. My baby. My little boy. My heart. And yet, I'm not surprised. After all, if I could keep this kid surrounded by nothing by peace and harmony, without experiencing a broken heart or any disappointment, I'd certainly try. So why should it be surprising to want to protect him as long as I could, from as much as I could? Despite knowing that I simply can't.

Do I feel in my heart that he believes in HIS heart that the decisions he makes are the best ones he could make? Do I believe in his abiility to think through all aspects of any situation he faces? Do I trust that I have raised him to think clearly, look thoroughly into and beyond any momentary glory?

Yes, I do.

And so I have to say that while I may never be comfortable with his decisions to immerse himself in places and careers that leave him vulnerable to hurts, heartache, disappointment and danger; I can 100%, without reservations, support, encourage, believe in and trust him.
PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek


Cecily R said...

Holy crud made me all misty again. I admire you both. It kind of squeezes my heart thinking of Jock in the Marines. In both a good, proud way and in a Mom's-afraid-of-everything way. And he isn't even mine!

Cheri said...

You are an AWESOME Mom! That is a very hard thing to put your heart and mind around!

Karen said...

Funny how it's a completely different perspective when it's your kids and not yourself going into the military. Funny how 9/11 has so much to play into that.

He's a good kid, and you've raised him right. But I'd push for the Air Force myself.

Raise Them Up said...

What a great way to look at it. If my boys decide a similar path is right for them, I hope I can work through things even close to how you are viewing it.

Great post!

Raise Them Up said...

What a great way to look at it. If my boys decide a similar path is right for them, I hope I can work through things even close to how you are viewing it.

Great post!

Burgh Baby said...

You? Have done very good. Very, very good.

I can't even imagine having to face that your kid is very near to needing to make that Very Big Decision.

Michelle said...

Wow, what a powerful PSF. I wish your son luck in his making a decision regarding his future.

Heidi said...

What a great kid you have! I'm proud of him and I don't even know him. We have to have someone to keep us safe and who better than someone you absolutely trust to do the job right. I wish you both luck.
If you'd like to stop by my blog I'm at Cake Crumbs.

kaye said...

gotta love 'em, no matter what. I’m remembering 9/11 today here’s my link Have a nice Friday!

Carrie and Troy Keiser said...

You are awesome! Way to raise them! I hope and pray that I am that kind of person.... that my kids I too can say this about.