Tuesday, August 6, 2013

like e.t. and elliot

that symbiotic relationship
that by definition
if I remember correctly from
homeschool biology
involves two different species
who depend on each other
sometimes to sustain life.
so maybe not that
but close.
That psychological connection
is what I'm getting at.
Remember when E.T. would feel
what Elliot was feeling
and vice-versa?


Some might call it
a mother-son bond.
Of course
I feel that connection with all my boys
some of my guys are more vocal
and will confide all
they are going through.
Not Joe.
He's more private and quiet.
That strong silent type
that'll keep you guessing.

When we explored
The Catcher in the Rye
this past year
Joe declared it his favorite book.
For those who know nothing about its history
(not referring to the crazy associations
that the Internet has spawned )
it is quite simply a novel about
Holden Caufield
a young man who is at that
pivotal point in life
torn between adolescence and adulthood.
Joe related strongly.
Isn't that always the precursor
to loving a book?

In a world where kids
grow-up fast...
Joe was happily rooted in 
Don't get me wrong
I saw the changes he was going through
the eagerness to accept more responsibility
the willingness to try new things
and explore the world
that fidgetiness I've witnessed in my teen boys
that screams out
"I want more"
change is a tripping stone for many.
Joe among them.
Count me in
But it is inevitable.
Now Joe would challenge that statement
with a

Celebrating his eighteenth year
was a quiet family event.
Graduating from High School
passed equally so
as Joe told me
he didn't think it was 
deserving of a big party.
(Mom still disagrees
but will honor his wishes)

This has been a long
to the point of this post.

This past week
Joe's big bro Josh
came over with some news.
The construction company he
 (and his Uncle Doug...cousins Gabe and Matt)
works at
wondered if he'd be interested in a job.
Although he didn't say it 
as I was jumping up and down
was written all over his face.
he doesn't shy away from hard work.
He loves physical challenges.

He also loves his free
that allows him to stay up until
playing PS games
waking at 3ish
(yep...that's p.m.)
helping around the house...
Oh, and he does...
a lot!

A life that allows him to
play when he wants
and work when he wants.

Side jobs and scrapping part-time
had been serving him well.

But I did see 
something else.
A teetering.
A glimpse that had him wondering
what it would be like
heavily sprinkled with
I like things the way they are.
Fear of the unknown.

This job is a full-time position.

My stomach started to cramp.
My heart raced a bit.
so did Joe.

We are suffering together
as we navigate through the

We've survived the 
first day at the office
for safety tests
paper work
I'm sure a bit of teasing encouragement
from Uncle Doug
drug testing.

Today is his first
official day
on the job
where he will be doing grunt work
mixing mud
climbing scaffolding 8 stories high...
he can't wait for that part!

my stomach hurts.

Maneuvering the twists and turns
of these monumental moments...
first day
 first week
first month
as we make our way to normal
(for us, anyway)
and feel the
with that 
payroll check.

"E.T. phone home!"

Being mom.
It never gets easier.


  1. It doesn't get easier does it? My son is the quiet type, but sometimes I am given useful info :) My daughter is the anxious one and she is on the verge of graduating law and it is unknown where she will work and what kind of work-makes for a stressful "what if" scenario in our minds.

    I think the best part of parenting is watching kids forge their path in life and see their happiness shine through when their choices please them.

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  3. Can I just add that I felt this nervousness for Joe, too? First response was "Is this something that Joe really wants to do?" He's such an entrepreneur, and working for "the man" can be taxing. But then my second thought was "Hey, it will be a good experience for Joe to work with all the 'colorful characters' you experience on a job site." Luke learned a lot from his grunt work job last summer. The hardest part is staying true to yourself and not letting too much of the 'colorful' from those characters rub off onto you. Praying for you, Joe!