Angels Unaware

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p1040172When my OS began his exploration into attending West Point, so did I.

We were about to embark on an exciting journey and I had no clue what he was getting himself and the entire family into!

I was so clueless about West Point, the United States Military Academy, I had to google search west+point.

Where is West Point anyway?

That’s when I found it is far away. Far away as in New York. Far away as in a 10 hour drive, but about 15 hour of driving time if I’m in the car accounting for potty breaks and not including an overnight stay at a nice hotel. Yes, I am ever so slightly high maintenance.

It just so happened the Lord had placed in our lives a great couple, Gigi and Eric. Eric is a professor at West Point and we met here when he was in our state completing his doctorate degree and attending our church and Sunday School class. When the family left for a two year class assignment to Korea, we thought we would never see them ever again, this side of heaven.

But that was not the Lord’s will and soon, they will return to West Point. We will re-connect with them! When our son was accepted at West Point, Eric called us all the way from Korea and lovingly, honestly explained what R-Day was going to be like for us as parents.

In a word – HARD!

After speaking with him on the phone, I literally collapsed on my carpet, unsure of how I was going to handle parting with my treasured boy. And not only saying goodbye but doing it in under two minutes.

99068-photo250Enjoy this picture I took thanks to my Mac Photo Booth aptly conveying my sentiments last year.Very attractive, huh?

Since then we have pressed on. And we have been blessed. We have met amazing people who have extended themselves in ways I never expected. I see how the Lord’s hand has linked us up with caring families who have been there for us and our OS.

For example, Peggie, a West Point mom whom I never met when I called her because we have a mutual acquaintance. Peggie allowed me to cry on her proverbial shoulder. I barely got one sentence out of my mouth, before the Lacrimal Glands got activated. She was such an encouragement and she listened like a mama who’s been there, done that. And she still spoke in full sentences which gave me hope that I could actually live through this experience with some semblance of sanity.

aa0c5-p1070259Then there have been the Hoffman’s who take Nate out regularly when they visit their plebe at West Point. Patti gives our OS an obligatory hug from me and has loved my boy as if he were her own. This family knows no bounds of kindness. Such a beautiful lady who even did an eyebrow trim for my husband when we were all together at Plebe Parent Weekend! I love these people! How many of your girlfriends can you ask to trim your husband’s eyebrows??? Those friends are few and far between!

p1070333Merrily is a gem too. Although recently faced with the loss of her husband, she is a resilient mama of a very fine plebe. That lady is someone that from the minute she called me on the phone one day after communicating via her husband’s blog, I felt an instant connection to and we ended our first conversation saying, “I love you” and meaning it. 

 

And then there’s Kim. Kim works at West Point and she’s a grad. Very huah but in no way obnoxious. Kim understands what it’s like to be a cadet and she’s a mother which is a perfect combination. 

When Nate’s birthday rolled around on April 12th, Kim dropped off in our son’s room, a bouquet of balloons, a big birthday card and an ice cream party certificate. She has offered to take my OS out for pizza, invited him to an Easter dinner, truly extended herself in ways I could have never imagined. And we have only met once when she recognized me at A-Day. I had a broken foot and a scooter, so I was an easy target and she has been reading my blog for a while. I felt so fancy when she came up and introduced herself! Since then, we have kept in touch and when I have offered to reimburse Kim for her generosity, she quickly rebuffs my offer, saying she does these things gladly and free of charge. Oh, how I am blessed!

 
I am reminded of the Scripture found in Hebrews 13:2 “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.” 
 
I reflect on this journey thus far and sometimes can’t believe how fast my son’s plebe year has passed! I praise the Lord because we have survived, occasionally even thrived. We have all learned things about ourselves, our strength, the importance of faith and prayer and developing an extended sense of family. 

 
Y’all, I am meeting angels. Not the fluttering kind with halos and wings but still divine messengers of God who have lighted this path with compassion. I hope you have been meeting some along your way as well, wherever it may be…
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6 thoughts on “Angels Unaware

  1. My cadet began his quest for WP in the 9th grade. We bought him a gray “Army” hoodie sweatshirt and, it became his identity on the football team. At first the older guys just called him “Army Boy”, but by his senior year, everyone on the football team called him “Sarge”.(Even though us West Point educated moms now know the difference between a commissioned officer and a NCO, I didn’t then, and most people, including the football guys, still don’t…just thought I would pause to brag about how much I have learned this past year and a half.Ha.).Here’s the point: My son went to a small Christian high school (only 125 people in his graduating class), and we live in Arkansas (not a major highway to WP.Most people are only slightly aware that they should be awed by this great institution).When he realized that he needed to join a lot of stuff and be on a lot of sports teams in order to get to WP, he joined the cross country team. His cc coach was a woman and also…a WP graduate (from the second class of women to graduate…she is awesome and one of my heroes).Her husband…also a WP grad (and a footnote: He was the Beast commander on the “Surviving WP” series by Nat’l Geo.) They have a firstie graduating this year and a yearling son (who also ran cc with Clayton before going to WP). So, when I say they are a WP fam, I mean it! The Com was in their wedding!What are the odds that this extremely WP fam would be so involved in Clayton’s life? This awesome fam is the reason why Clayton got in. They guided me every step of the way! Husband of cc coach personally coached Clayton to prepare him for the PT entrance test!Now, that’s a God-thing and a huge confirmation that Clayton is exactly where he should be.

  2. amazing stories of God’s provision (nb, so pleased you met up with Merrily. I got onto Pastor Bond’s site through yours last year and still think about what a God centred and amazing family they are – thanks for sharing their blog with everyone last year.)

  3. It is always incredible to see the way the Lord weaves people into other’s lives. Thanks Bev, aka Hillcrest Cottage for sharing that great story! My OS had a graduating class of 40 from a small Christian school so I know what you mean! I love seeing pieces of the puzzle when they come together. How cool is that!

  4. Such a great blog post! This reminds me of all the people who helped me make it through WP–and there were many! It’s a strange combination of the hardest thing you’ve ever done (at least it was for me) and some of the greatest people you’ve ever met who help you survive. What a blessing to have so many more “friends for life!”Paul

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