My son John called me the other day from California. He moved out there a few years ago from Philadelphia.
We don’t get to talk as much as I would like, because his job requires long days and keeps him busy. It is a new job, one started just this summer; and he loves it.
After we hung up, I thought back over his life; smiling tearfully at how far he had come.
As every mother must have, I have snippets of memory stored away; pictures that run through my mind like a slow moving film of his life. They come and go in succession, filling me with a yearning for those days gone by.
When he was born, nearly 36 years ago, I took one look at that tiny face and fell headlong in love.
As I look back, there is an image of him around three years old, head tipped to the side, as he implores me to let him say something on the tape recorder so that he can listen to himself when I play it back.
There are all of those ‘first days of school’ that were stored away every September, and bits and pieces of Christmases long past.
As he grew, there was almost every sport offered at school: basketball, football, softball, soccer, tennis. The sport he excelled at was skiing.
He learned to ski at the age of four, and gave me one of the major scares of my life a year later.
I stood at the bottom of the hill in front of the lodge and suddenly saw him halfway down one of the toughest trails. I knew from the way he was coming just what he intended and my heart leapt into my throat.
Just below him was a jump, made for a competition, which had to be at least eight feet high from top to bottom.
My heart stopped as he hit that jump and sailed into the air; this tiny speck in dark blue. It didn’t start beating again until after his perfect landing and swishing stop in front of me.
Not even the awed admiration of a group of young men standing next to me could still the remnants of fear that filled this young mother.
I looked down into his grinning face as he skidded to a stop and asked, “How was that, Mom?”
I couldn’t stop my terror-laden reaction as I said, “Don’t you ever do that to me again!”
But even as the words floated toward him, relief at his safety, and pride at his skill brought an answering grin to my own mouth.
His skiing ability grew from there, as confirmed by the many photos that I have stored away; images of a young man in various mid-air poses.
In 1988, he informed his dad and me that he had decided what he wanted to do for a job when he graduated high school. He had just watched the movie ‘Cocktail’ with Tom Cruise, and, being a very ‘social’ person, had decided he liked the looks of being a bartender.
This would not have been my first choice for him, not liking the whole bar scene thing; but it was going to be his life, after all. When he graduated from high school, he went to bartender’s school and began working at various places nearby.
Since then, we have prayed for the Lord’s leading and direction in his life; an opening and closing of doors for him.
Through the years, he has called numerous times, asking for prayer when a decision had to be made about a move or a new job, and God has seen fit to answer in unmistakable ways.
He has worked his way up through the ranks, slowly working through positions of bar tender and manager to get to where he is today.
The new job? He is now in a management position at an upscale wine bar in one of the oldest, largest wineries in California. He is attending Chamber of Commerce meetings and initiating area events to bring more people into that area of the state.
While bartending was not my first choice for him as an occupation, I firmly believe that God has had His hand in the direction those jobs have taken him.
And with God leading, who knows where he will eventually end up?
© Drusilla Mott and https://drusillamott.wordpress.com, 2011