Update on my oldest… Or: I Have a Son with a Full Beard
In case you’re burning with curiosity about what all is going on in our home — three sons, three daughters, two parents, two dogs, in a house in the desert — here you go!
(Well, actually, my plan was to do ONE post with ALL of us on it, but that’s going to take too long. So, I’ll just start with Ethan.*)
My son Ethan will be 18 in June, which hardly seems possible. He has a full beard, and I guess he looks like a connoisseur of ales, as folks frequently ask his opinion on craft beers at the grocery store where he works, Sprouts.
It took a while for us to work through what E would be doing in the fall. He’s such a bright young man, and has never done poor work at anything; he always produces excellent, high-quality work. But, he doesn’t love school, and wasn’t looking forward to four more years…. But, when my husband said that, if he wasn’t in college in the fall, he would be working full time, even if that meant Ethan would need to get a 2nd or even a 3rd job, suddenly E was much more participatory in the process to get him in a school, come August.
Ethan is so very different from Grant, our second-born. Grant has his future plans all mapped out. Ethan just doesn’t know. We keep waiting for inspiration or direction from God or some big audacious dream or SOMETHING that we can encourage in him, something we can help him pursue. But, no. Nothing definite.
He thinks he would like to possibly become a pastor some day… Which is not necessarily an undeniable call by the Spirit to the ministry. But, we’re running with that plan for now. He’ll be pursuing a BA in Communications at Arizona State University West campus. That is, if the scholarship estimator tool on the ASU website is accurate and that most of his tuition will truly be paid by whomever pays for such things — Board of Regents? Taxpayers? I truly don’t know. But, I thank them in advance.
It was funny — well, not FUNNY — but as I was considering what a good major would be for Ethan, which would serve him well in ministry but also be something that he could parlay into a paying job that is not ministry-related (because who is going to hire a 22-year-old, fresh out of college, to be a full-time pastor? No one. He’ll likely have part-time, entry-level, or even volunteer posts, perhaps while he works on a Master’s in pastoral ministry or something like that….). Anyway, I ran into an old youth pastor of Ethan’s, and we were chatting about him, and she mentioned that her old pastor had done that exact same thing. And it dawned on me that I knew her old pastor, as I went to high school with him. I sent him a private message about the idea — prepping for the ministry with a degree in Communications — and he was SO VERY encouraging. That is, actually, exactly what he did — a BA in Communications from Arizona State. So, that was confirmation enough.
There are a few extra hoops for homeschoolers to jump through, to gain entry into Arizona State, but it’s nothing too challenging. Everything should be sent out in the mail either today or tomorrow. And the main portion of his application, which is online, is already done. So now, we wait.
If the scholarship doesn’t come through, we’ll reassess at that point.
I’m immensely proud of Ethan. In spite of my failings, my omissions, my misdirections, my inexperience, God is faithful, and Ethan is a fine young man.
I’m also really pleased that Ethan wants to stay at home in the fall. It’s not a “failure to launch” kind of thing; he just loves us, and isn’t ready to leave home. He’d rather stay at home while being at school. We are 100% fine with that. It’s touching, actually. Both my husband and I had poor situations at home, when we were seniors, and we COULD NOT WAIT to leave home, to get outta there. Ethan is solid in his relationships with us, with his friends, at our church… He’s healthy. That, to me, is nothing short of amazing.
*In case you’re curious: I cleared this whole post with Ethan. It has his stamp of approval, or at least, there’s nothing mortifying enough to omit.