January’s Season of Limbo

Today, I am having a little trouble deciding what to write about. I’ve been writing this blog since the end of February 2017 and rarely have I had trouble coming up with a topic to put to prose. But today,  I’ve hit a roadblock. Do not get me wrong, I haven’t spent all that much time thinking about it, but still, when I sit down to write, my words are not flowing.

I hate to revert to a top ten post or a “currently” type post that explains what I am seeing from where I sit and what I am doing at the moment. It just seems silly to me. Very obviously, I am trying to write!

January is an odd month. Where I live, in the upper mid-west, it is cold and often overcast.  This coming Monday, my youngest son will enter his last semester of high school. He’s ready to move on and frankly, I am too. We’ve had a child in our local school district for the last 21 years – straight! That is a great length of time!  His schedule will change and he will be moving on the fast and furious slope towards graduation in May.

He still needs to choose where he will attend college. This is quite different for our family, as his brothers were both settled into their choice by now.  It is scholarship season. In spare time, essays need to be written, edited, and/or rewritten. There is some degree of tension in the air at home, and I would assume at school too, for a fair share of the seniors. Most of his friends have chosen and “announced” where they intend to spend the next four years of their life. It might be adding to his angst – I really don’t know.  I know that he has choices – he got in both colleges to which he applied and they have different resources, different programs, different advantages, different populations, and different opportunities. I think this is part of his conundrum. Choosing. It is hard; I get it. Still, I want him to choose.

I am trying to be patient for I know (having been through this twice before) that he still has time. But, I also see a great difference in how things are done both by colleges and families in the seven-year span between our oldest’s and youngest’s senior year. Most everything now is digital. He got digital acceptances far before the traditionally mailed letters arrived.  In fact, it’s been three weeks between the digital acceptance to one university and his paper acceptance from the same university that arrived today.

Another difference is that families are quicker to share. It’s so easy on social media. I understand that too. There will be many proud moments in the months ahead.  The digital nature of information lends urgency to updating those we know. I’m just not sure of the necessity. I am sure that this is age-related, as I am an “older” parent. 

But, I do wonder when families get to their third, fourth, or fifth child peering into their own vast, unknown, and often bright futures, if they will feel the same as I – ready for it to be over. The time has come to move on. I feel it in the air. I see it in his mood. The anticipation of “something else” is almost palpable.

I cannot say that he has senioritis.  You know – that apathetic affliction that attacks seniors at the end of their high school tenure.  He’s been serious about finals this week. He stated relief several times when things have gone well. He’s spending more and more time on his art and the promotion of it which is the field in which he wants to study and flourish. No, there is nothing wrong with his motivation or self-direction. In his own words this past week, he said his self-motivation is stronger than ever before. I can see that is the case as his productivity has been astounding.

But, January is a month of limbo. He has one more season of high school athletics, one more semester of classes, and one more online class to finish. Eventually, he’ll decide where his future lies.  It’ll all happen soon enough.  Very soon. Sooner than he knows.



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