Better Than We Could Have Planned

Some kids break every mold, and in our family that would be Isaiah.  In May we thought he was going to attend the University of Idaho (as his four older siblings have done), but then another school came along and he thought maybe he would go there.  We spent hours and hours in conversation while on vacation, Russ did stacks of paperwork, we made dozens of phone calls, and in the end he realized that it was not the school for him.

UofI started classes last Monday, and he made the decision not to go to the other school Wednesday night.  Thursday morning dawned with another decision to be made.  Should he jump right into classes at UofI and move into a dorm this weekend?  Should he defer until next year?  He had been offered an internship that really appealed to him as well.  Maybe that was the better option?

A few hours and phone calls later it was settled and we are all thankful.  Isaiah is going to spend this year as the Marketing/Creative Arts Intern for Dollar for the Poor, which is a partner of The Water Fight.  He’ll continue developing The Water Fight while also learning more about film, photography, graphics, public speaking, and who knows what else.  It is a dream internship – although unpaid, so he’ll also be finding a part-time job.  He will move west (near Seattle) on Labor Day and the adventure will begin.

It’s been a winding road, and we believe this is exactly God’s best for him.

His other task this fall is to research schools and decide where he will apply, with the plan to begin college a year from now.  He may still choose UofI, which we like because it would be the debt-free option and solid education, but he may also choose some place else.  One thing I know about Isaiah, he loves Jesus and wants to do His will.  It’s not always easy to figure it out, but God always reveals His plan – sometimes at the last minute.

For Russ and me, this was a lesson in trusting God, guiding Isaiah, and letting him make the decision.  It was hard! We gave him our opinions, shared information, prayed with him and for him, but in the end, we would have supported him no matter what he chose to do.

At the end of the day, this parenting challenge was all about relationships – our relationship with Isaiah, his relationship with us, and each of our relationships with God.  By His grace, we managed to keep this as our priority even in the midst of a process that was difficult, uncomfortable, and tiring.

What challenge have you faced lately?  It’s a journey, friends, and we’re all still learning.

(photo credit: Annie Lales)

Lisa

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Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.

15 Comments

  1. Giann
    August 24, 2012

    Oh my…this is almost the exact same road I am on…Its frustrating at times but to hear a story like this one brings me so much comfort and peace! And like you said, God sometimes waits until the very last minute to reveal His plan for us…which I'm currently waiting for *that* moment when He will do so…

    Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  2. Paula Miles Spears
    August 24, 2012

    The internship sounds like a fabulous opportunity. College will still be there next year!

    Reply
  3. Cat
    August 24, 2012

    You guys rock! What a great opportunity. That must have been a stressful process though. 🙂 Can't wait to hear more as things develop for him!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Qualls
      August 24, 2012

      Crazy stressful – but all good!

      Reply
  4. Kylee
    August 24, 2012

    So excited for this opportunity that Isaiah has! No doubt the Lord is going to grow and stretch Him in big ways this year!

    Reply
  5. Ann
    August 24, 2012

    There's nothing more time-wasting than going to college before you're ready. There's no more helpful way to appreciate college than to do a gap year where you see the world in a new way. (If only all colleges required it!) Isaiah made the right choice. It must have been hard for all of you to get down to the wire like this, but what a great chance for him.

    Reply
  6. Susan
    August 24, 2012

    I think gap years rock—he will enter college more mature, more focused and with a better vision of his future. Life and the world of grownup work lasts a long time these days and I think there's no reason to rush college, grad school, etc. Take some time to find your path is what I tell my kids.

    Reply
  7. Donna
    August 24, 2012

    So exciting to launch new ones off–though very stressful at times!

    We will be launching into the wonderful world of grandparent-hood in the next month sometimes. We are so excited for these changes in life.

    Reply
  8. Emily
    August 24, 2012

    Yayyyyyyy Isaiah! love, em

    Reply
  9. Jenna
    August 24, 2012

    Hi
    My name is Jenna, your kids are handsome and beautiful. Your kids are all special miracle from god, a gift from above, and earthly angel's.
    I was born with a rare life threatening disease, and have 14 other medical conditions, and developmental delays.
    I wrote this poem
    Each of us are Special
    Each of us different,
    No one is the same
    Each of are us are unique in our own way,
    Those of us who have challenges, we smile through our day.
    It doesen't matter what other's say
    we are special anyway.
    What is forty feet and sings? the school chior http://www.miraclechamp.webs.com

    Reply
  10. Marissa
    August 24, 2012

    He's such an incredible kid. I'm so thrilled for him that he's getting this experience. He has such a gift.

    Reply
  11. Laurel
    August 24, 2012

    I just love that you guys are so willing to support him in whatever he chooses, and that you remember how much he loves Jesus and wants to do his will. That's the kind of parent I want to be as my kids get older! Thanks for the example!

    Reply
  12. Nancy
    August 24, 2012

    Oh I just love love love to hear about young people (how old do I sound saying terms like "young people?") who think out of the box. YEA Isaiah!!!! I'm so proud of him and I''ve never even met him!

    Challenges? Letting my oldest go. Not sure she's ready. Kinda know she's not. But at some point, teaching becomes impossible. And being the net is all that's left. It's so amazingly hard to watch.

    Thank you Lisa for sharing it all!

    nancy

    Reply
  13. Mary
    August 24, 2012

    Brave Son. Brave Mama and Dad. And bravery is needed in our day!!!! Looking forward to updates!

    Reply
  14. Courtney
    September 10, 2012

    wow…sounds like QUITE the roller coaster! how exciting!

    Reply

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