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The long shadows

Last night, Sam and I went on a bike ride just at dusk.  The sun was quickly settling down on the edge of a 'far see'.

At dinner, I made the mistake of talking about two of his friends who leave on their missions this week.  I am going to miss his friends terribly!  They have been amazing in every sense of the word and, as a result of Sam choosing such amazing people to spend his time with, his teenage years were a piece of cake. Well, you know, they were riddled with tricky moments as well but his friends stood by his side.  They all towed the line.  They all, individually chose to be where they were suppose to be, to do what they were suppose to do and they all had a conscience and character to be good, solid teenagers who took care of each other and those around them.

Every day, I am impressed more and more by these friends of his.  On Sunday, I saw the two boys who leave tomorrow and they both gave me a big hug and told me how much they would miss me and miss hanging out at our house.  So, it is sad to see them leave to serve the Lord.  It brings up a lot of anxiety for Sam who is more than worthy to serve a mission but has a great deal of anxiety and worry over many real and difficult challenges he is currently facing with his health.

Because of this reminiscing, I think it stirred up the anxiety for him that he tries so hard to pretend doesn't exist and he was not a happy camper.  He was pretty grumpy.  I talked to him a little about the notion that sometimes being paralyzed in indecision is worse than just making the decision and moving forward.  We all do this.  We have a tough choice to make so we avoid it for what we think can be forever and spend that forever moment wringing our hands in an undercurrent of anxiety that pulls at us.

 After I got home from work, I noticed that he was working on a budget for himself.  He alluded to the fact that dealing with his finances is hard.  I was proud of him for facing this problem head on.  He makes enough at his job for his needs, or what I see are his needs but he thinks he needs more.  It was good to see him working out his problems on paper.

Sam and the long shadows of his day

I told him that I could see he was affected by our conversation earlier and suggested we go on a bike ride.  Sam thrives on activity.  Sitting around makes him crazy!  I tucked a few dollars in my pocket and when we got out on the open road, I suggested we ride to get a sno-cone.

It was a nearly perfect night for a ride.  It was 78 degrees at just after 9pm and the breeze was gentle and peaceful.  With every little jump and wheelie he did, I could see the anxiety melt away.   I feel bad for him.  His shadow was long on the pavement behind him and so it is in his life.  The time to plan his future is now, he is running out of time to decide on a few things and that is hard.  It's hard to see him grappling with this.

He finally seemed relaxed by the time we finished our sno cone and headed for home.  It was almost dark but we took the long way home anyways.  I just couldn't pass up such a perfect night and I love spending time with my kids.

Sam trying really hard not to smile! He has a stubborn streak for sure!

That may have not been the best decision given the fact I have zero vision at night and this town is opposed to light pollution.  People say your other senses kick in when one is compromised but I have compromised hearing as well so I pretty much had to Helen Keller my way home.  I couldn't even see Sam in front of me!  Let's just say black mailboxes have a way of sneaking up on you at night and the pot holes seemed to chide and laugh as I hit just about every one, tossing me off balance more than once.

We made it home and Sam seemed much better.  It's a challenging time for him that's for sure.



  1. I enjoyed your pleasant evening vicariously. :) Thank you. God bless Sam. What a wonderful, valiant young man.


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