I got to eat supper with my son last Friday night. He and his roommates came with us to the Shake Shack in Boca Raton and Hunter invited another soccer player as well - a young man named Elijah. I wish I would of taken a photo of the 5 of them -- Owen, Elijah, Hunter, Jay, and Braxton...as they gobbled up their hamburgers and us parents just enjoyed their silliness and their banter back and forth. However, I felt if I snapped a photo - the moment would of been ruined.
One is of his FAU mug shot for the Soccer Team and the other is of his high school days playing against Jensen Beach.
I wanted to blog today, Friday as we drove home, it really hit me -- this 'boy' is really a man. He is old enough to be drafted and old enough to be declared 'independent' ....but still very young.
Of course, us parents grabbed the tab ( $) of the hungry lads...but as they ate their cheeseburgers and cheese fries, the talk between them, the chatter about their coach and what went RIGHT in the game and what went WRONG tickled both me and my husband and I am sure it tickled the other moms too. We caught up on some of the hi - jinx but mostly, we all just laughed.
I sat quietly and prayed -- Lord, protect this mind. Is he ok? He seems so independent? Am I needed? God...does he even call upon you?
I heard everything discussed from recent test scores on their math tests ....to which one of their professors cancelled YOGA within 5 minutes of class for 'no apparent good reason'. And they are ALL very excited about State Cup and rejoining their soccer buddies from TEam Boca in March -- Several times, stories were started at the expense of another without names mentioned and the boys would get a kick out of watching us figure out which 'roommate' was being tattled on.
I also found out that 'pilates' is harder than yoga. But that yoga has some good stretching moves. And then the girls - as they would come into the restaurant -- comments would fly. Or should I say, "looks". At one point, one of the boys made an off color remark about an opposing player, and my son's quick discernment took notice and I noticed that he was concerned for Elijah -- was he offended? Then I witnessed HP just goof around and banter with Elijah and rub his elbow and give him a wink.... I don't think Elijah even heard the comment. Elijah is from the Islands - one HANDSOME young man. ( Afterwards, I told HP that I no longer needed to sit across from this man - that at our next meal adventure, I would be sitting on the same side of the table -- as I was beginning to lust.)
Brendan just laughed -- he got a kick out of that - he felt he was a handsome young man too! LOL
He is one FINE looking young man. ( Elijah is..and well, my son is too for that matter! )
Hunter laughed, 'yes, he gets all the girls'...and then a short discussion on 'who' he thinks he is- ethnically and who he chooses to date. All very real and yet grown up and just surreal -- Am I really discussing this with my son? And I noticed that Hunter sees him as just another man - a peer. He does not see the 'color'..but he is very aware of the world that notices it. And HP mentioned there is more discrimination based on what you wear at college .....still sad.
I guess I was SUPER sensitive to it, as we have been discussing discrimination in our social studies classes with it being Black History Month and reading about how slavery and the Civil Rights movement have connections. I pray always that I taught my children to be 'color blind'...and it was just a warm assurance that my child does not 'see the color' but is aware - was discerning and watchful of his friend.
He has told me that his roommate - Owen and Elijah have become some of his closest friends. It was surreal to watch. These 5 boys - these 5 men will probably become life long friends -- maybe even when Elijah returns to Antigua. (Hunter plans on visiting!) On our way home, we prayed that Elijah would be granted a scholarship to return to FAU -- only the Coach knows for sure. For that matter, Hunter may not be granted a scholarship....time will tell.
Anyway -- I got a glimpse into the world of my 'man'. He no longer needs me that much. He figures things out on his own and he is a grown up - a 'young grown' up...one I am very proud of, one that I do miss......but not at 11:30 at night -- I am thankful I am in bed by then, not having to come up with a meal after soccer practice. But...those days are missed.
Lord, protect EACH one of those men -- from injury, from the enemy who will try and steal, kill, and destroy. Forge those friendships for a lifetime, bless them and God I pray that each of them...we see and understand that YOU are the reason...YOU are it -- but I pray THEY will see and believe this too...and that YOU are the one they must call upon and God I pray that my man -- my Hunter-- is doing his part to let the others see JESUS -- in him. Amen.
Ps Lord, thank you for the clear illustration on Friday night - that my son is a GOOD boy..amen.
PPS...he is very cute too -- maybe you could remind him to send me a card for my birthday in two weeks -- I would LOVE that God! Just saying.