Joseph Goes to College
We have three of our children heading off to college this fall and the first to leave was Joseph. He packed his belongings last Thursday and everything fit into three boxes and one large bag. I was happy he had so few things thus leaving room for the rest of the family to fit in the car, but I also thought, "Hmmmmmm...I now know what to send him: a few reminders from home to ward off the inevitable homesickness that accompanies such a transition". The trip to Nashville was bittersweet because I knew the return ride home would be without Joseph. Kellyann, Dianne and Mark joined Mike and I for the ride. Kell and Di chatted and discussed life as a freshman with Joe. I think he appreciated the advice from his big sisters. He is launching this expedition into uncharted territory with both excitement and trepidation and their words of wisdom helped alleviate some of his concerns.
Vanderbilt University had many fun events planned for families and incoming freshmen and we tried to fit in as many things as we could. Saturday ended with church services for Protestants and those of the Muslim and Jewish faiths. We saw students with placards stating 'follow me to Mass' and as we wound our way to Benton Chapel for our Catholic Mass, dusk settled in on the campus. The lights of the chapel twinkled over the lawns and the priest stood at the entrance greeting us as we entered. When we settled in the pew I knew this was a familiar place that Joseph could come to when he felt like all the newness of college life was too much, Mass would be there to offer nourishment for his soul, comfort for his worries and peace for his mind.
Afterwards, we hugged good-bye on the lawn and waved until Joe disappeared into the darkness. As he walked to his dorm room, I prayed that all good things would be given to him.
Peace and Joy,