One of my former students, an Eagle Scout, dropped by to visit me today. I did a double-take when I saw him--he's really grown up and filled out. Anyway, he came by to tell me something.
He's been in junior college for awhile, but he realized that he was only there for his parents because it's what they wanted. He hated it because it wasn't what he wanted. He wasn't happy there. School isn't for him right now.
So he enlisted in the army. He'll report to basic training in the next couple months.
He said his entire outlook has improved. He's looking forward to being a part of something bigger than himself, something he's genuinely interested in. He'll be doing basic, then airborne (parachute) school, and then Ranger School. He wants to be assigned to the 75th Rangers, and is looking at special operations. This is what he wants to do. I could see it in the smile he wore, in the pride he now carries.
And he wanted me to know.
I wonder if he has any idea how good he made me feel by telling me his story, how proud I am of the relationship we established, how proud I am of him, how happy I am that he's found what he's been looking for.