Monday, May 02, 2011

Plan A for Bantam20

Well, we've been holding our breaths here, during B20's second semester at college.  His first semester was a little rocky.  He ended up getting very behind in one class and having to drop it, which took him below full-time status and made it quite an expensive semester.  But he passed all his remaining classes, and that was with zero support, as it turned out, so we gave him another chance.

For the second semester, he had a lot more accountability and support through the tutoring center, and we were pleased and hopeful.  So it was disappointing to hear, two-thirds of the way through the semester, that the same thing had happened again:  he had gotten impossibly far behind in one class and had to drop it.

Papa Rooster and I didn't really have to think about our decision:  It's just too expensive per semester to only earn minimal credits.  B20 would not be able to go back.

He knew it.  He's terribly disappointed in himself.  But he's also got perspective: "Well, God answered my prayer.  I wanted to be able to finish out the whole year, and I'm getting to do that."

And that's how I'm looking at it too.  I'm so glad he's had this year.  I thought I'd feel regret at the "waste" of money, but I'm glad he's had the experience of living on his own, of attending college classes and getting a taste of what it will take to finish his degree, if he really wants to.  Both his advisor and his tutor believe he has the intellectual ability; he needs the motivation to really want the education, for himself, and the self-discipline to minimize distractions.

I reminded him that originally, his plan had been to live at home, find a job, work and take some classes.  Going to college was kind of a "Plan B."  So in a way, we're just going back to Plan A, I told him.  It seemed a reassuring thought, and on Easter Sunday, I heard him telling someone at church that he was returning to Plan A.

The problem with Plan A is that B20 doesn't have his driver's license.  We deferred the decision after he passed the driving test by not "cashing in" the test results for a license immediately, and the more we've thought about it, the less inclined we are to have him driving.  There's so much information coming in while one is driving, and it keeps changing; it's hard for him to prioritize it all.  To him, a billboard may demand more attention than the brake lights of the car in front of him.  He's as nervous as we are.

When he gets home from college in two weeks, he'll apply for a City of Kenosha program that helps find jobs and possibly transportation for people with disabilities.  I'm hoping for a job that keeps him physically active, since he's put on 50 pounds in his year at college, and his leisure activities are all sedentary:  reading, manipulating computer images and video games.  Maybe in the long term, this kind of job will be better for him than the kind of desk job he'd have with a degree in Digital Design.  And I'm praying hard for a solution to the transportation issue...anything but Mom!

I invite you once again to join us in prayer for B20's future.  We are so thankful for God's clear direction to send him to college for this year.  We will be happy to have him back at home for now, but clearly he needs a job to keep him active and occupied by something other than his own leisure activities.  He also needs to pay back his student loans, and start saving for further education or his own place, which is one of his heart's desires.  It was very encouraging to see that he could manage well on his own.  He didn't oversleep or skip classes or chapel, and he's been attentive to deadlines and assignments in most of his classes.

So much to be thankful for!  A whole set of new concerns lies just around the corner, but for now, I am grateful.


Ann said...

I'll be praying!

Moyra said...

I'll continue praying.

Anonymous said...

Just said a Hail Mary for Bantam20. Thanks for updating us on his progress. Matt

Linds said...

I'll be praying too, Jeanne. And if you could please pray for my youngest son, David, too? He is about to graduate from uni, and he seems at a loss to know where he should be or which way he should head. Further study seems a good option, but the cost will be immense. BUT God has a plan.....for both our boys.

At A Hen's Pace said...

Thank you all for your prayers. They mean so much!

Linds, thanks for sharing your request as well. I have prayed! And I am confident that God's plans are good and that He will direct them both. God is never at a loss! :)



Debbie said...

Sounds like you and he have kept a good perspective through it all. Kudos on all the wise decisions. I'm praying for the near future, as the school year ends and more decisions have to be made.

Love, Deb

Valerie J McIntyre said...

I will be praying for him. Just yesterday I was telling a friend of mind about him. She teaches music to kids with autism. He's such a good kid with a lot of potential. So many prayers for him have been answered over the years.