Intention {Community} Day 26: Stay Connected

…to re-connect with “kids” from my past.

 

I have worked with teenagers since I was a teen.  I was 18 when I worked at Camp Fireside as a counselor and then directed Ithiel Falls Camp Meeting the following year.

This was my very first cabin of campers ever (they are not teens).

Over the years I have worked with hundreds of teens.  I led church youth groups, taught classes, lived in a group home for chemically addicted teen boys, brought teens overseas, hosted teens overseas, directed drama troupes, led retreats, counseled, worked as a resident director, tutored, and more.

I adore teenagers.

And I so love watching them grown and learn and become.

Some of these students I have worked with have stayed in touch over the years.  Others I am connected to on Facebook.

And sometimes I get to sit with them face to face.

And that is a joy.

I chose long ago to let those students I work with take the lead in our friendship in the years to come.  And I appreciate every update I get, every email, every cup of tea.

This week I made sure to have time for two of my “kids,” both now in their 20’s.

I didn’t take pictures.  I meant to, but honestly, I was wrapped up in hearing about their lives now.  So here they are from days past and today.

I haven’t seen Sarah in years.  She is the same authentic and direct person she was when she was a sophomore in high school.  Today she seems incredibly self-aware and mature.  I adored meeting her for a morning tea.

 

 

No student that I have ever worked with has done a better job of staying in touch than Jade.  I met Jade when she was in eighth grade.  She is a remarkable human being and because she has been so in touch we have walked through a good deal of life together.  In the picture on the left she is loving children in Venezuela.  The same trip Andrew and I met on ten years ago.  And on the left she is beaming after her engagement to Jeremie.  They came over for a really nice night of dinner and games this week.

I feel grateful.  I am intentional about embracing opportunities to reunite with “students” from my past.  My life is fuller because of them.

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