I just received an email, the first one, from the archaeologist daughter down in Oregon! We have been communicating by text message and today was the first opportunity she had to get into town and find some wi-fi to send an email.
I am still rather misty eyed even as I type this post. I have read the email twice and sent copies to her brother and sister. The agreement is that this is not the person who drove out of my driveway in her old duct taped Jeep just a few weeks ago.
The girl who left my house was academically mature but she was a girl. This person, the one who sent this email is turning into a competent woman who absolutely loves what she is doing. Love isn’t strong enough a description. She is passionate about what she is doing. She is interacting with fellow future and current archaeologists, speaking about culture and history and times that I know nothing about but that she revels in.
She has taken side trips and excursions out of camp both academically planned and with her fellow students. She reported a large group spent the weekend camping completely under the stars and spelunking in a lava tube. (I am tearing up a little again) She has collected samples to bring back to her own college here and use in her research work.
Not knowing this person, I’m sure it can be hard for anyone reading this to understand or comprehend the emotion here but as a parent who so wants each of her children to not only be successful but love what they do, this email has assured me that her road is firmly set. Give her a trowel, a tent, a grid and she will be content anywhere for the rest of her life.
She posted this picture on Facebook and noted that this is what she sees each and every morning when she wakes at dawn to begin the days dig:
Another completely uncharacteristic thing that popped up in her email was the specific mention of just how handsome her dig partner is. This girl has never once in her 19 years noted (to me at least) even the slightest interest in the handsome factor of any male. Guys have always just been that other gender so to have a specific reference to this person’s appearance is really more than a passing comment.
Apparently they ended up arriving at camp at the same time, both early and before the rest of the crew, and must have hit it off right away. She said they have a great location for their dig site and have, thanks to Mike, rigged a nice tarp system to keep them in the shade.
There is so much more that jumps out of her email, but I need to savor that for myself for a while. I was thinking just today about how quickly the time is going by, and how soon that she would be rolling back into my driveway in that duct taped Jeep. I am sure she is thinking the same thing but almost assuredly no where near as anxious to point that Jeep back in the direction of Washington.
I can’t truly imagine what she must be feeling to be experiencing such a life changing event but I am oh so happy for her while at the same time dealing with that twinge of longing for my baby to stop growing up, pull her Jeep into its familiar spot and stay little just a bit longer.