Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Joy of Grown Children

This week my husband and I are enjoying the visit of our grown children.  For those of you who follow my posts, you know that one of the wonderful things about marrying my husband 12 years ago was inheriting two amazing sons.  When we married, they were in high school. They are now both grown, in great careers, and have selected wonderful life partners.  We have the pleasure of showing the beauty of Oregon to the two new women in the family, and our sons have the pleasure of revisiting a place they haven't seen for a few years.  Please excuse me while I do a little "proud parent" blathering here.

The oldest has married a woman he met in college while in ROTC. He chose Marines. She chose Navy.   He has now graduated from law school and will be starting his job at a law firm in D.C. the end of this month. After five years of living through various deployments and separations, they finally both married in 2010.

The youngest son began college thinking he would like to be an athletic trainer. He's always loved sports--football and baseball specifically.  However, after a year in the program he changed his study to Criminal Justice and it was absolutely the right choice for him. He felt challenged by the curriculum and did well in his studies. He is now a federal police officer at the Capital in Washington, D.C.  This past summer he became engaged to a wonderful young woman who works for the State Department.

Of course, I can't take any credit for these two sons outside of loving them.  Their great character, work ethic, and confidence are a part of the amazing job my husband and their mother did with raising them.  You see, in spite of a divorce when both boys were very young, the parents decided that no matter what their own differences they would always put the welfare of the boys first.

However, I can enjoy their company and still be very proud of their accomplishments. In romance writing terms, they are the best combination of alpha heroes and beta heroes. Both chose professions that put their life on the line, and would still do so for the ones they love. Yet they aren't completely alpha (in that caveman like quality that dictates every move), in that they both chose very strong women to marry--women who are completely capable of taking care of themselves but have chosen to be with them in spite of sometimes troubling alpha characteristics.  I believe the reason these strong women chose them is also for their beta characteristics--listening, reasoning, compromising, and supporting the women's choices, whether outside careers, stay-at-mom or some combination.

The best part for me? Not ever having birthed children, I look forward to being a grandmother who has all the privileges of watching little ones grow without the responsibility. I also look forward to seeing how these four young people navigate long term marriages and what amazing things all four of them accomplish as they get older.

Life is good. The sun is shining bright, and the abundance of Oregon beauty beckons us to get outside and experience it.

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