Falling in love with twenty-somethings can be brutal! Exhausting is another word for it, along with wonderful & exhilarating! Hubs & I teach a handful of them each year in our ministry school here in California & we love it with all that is in us. We give ourselves to them 4 days a week officially & of course more than that in our hearts & minds. (And on our cell phones & email!)
They come to us from all different states & countries, from all different backgrounds & family situations. I have become mom/sister/friend/counselor depending on the void in them that needs to be filled. Always pointing them to God as the only true dependable one who will never let them down.
The tricky part for me is the letting-them-go part. After their one year or two years with us they head back home or off to other parts of the world to be what they have learned they were designed to be. I get used to saying good-bye & resolve to adapt to not seeing them every day. Then they suddenly appear again! Walking into school at 8 am as a surprise or I see them worshiping on a Sunday morning in our home church where they are surrounded by huggers waiting in line to greet them, bouncing up & down, screaming as only 20 year old girls can!
Just this week I am saying goodbye to A____ who had recently moved back to our town after graduating last year & being gone for several months. Now she is off to flight school in her home town, which is not here! This morning at church I was happy to see two other former students visiting from out of town & they whispered that they are seriously considering moving back here in a few months!!
My poor heart is getting dizzy from all this coming & going! We have graduated 145 students over the years & I am somewhat in contact with all of them, some more than others. But all are in our hearts & thoughts. Hubs & I will dream about one or another & wonder what is going on with them. Good old FaceBook & Myspace are great for keeping in contact easily.
Falling in love with twenty-somethings is full of laughter, tears, more laughter, lots of long hugs, new language, creativity, challenge to old thinking, refusal to settle & of course more laughter. It requires huge flexibility...not something I am known for! I love my life. I adore these energetic, adventurous people. I will continue to let myself fall in love with them because it is totally WORTH IT!