Back in March, I was able to help Chris move back home from Texas. We had hoped this would be a permanent move and that he could get his program transferred to California. Unfortunately, after weeks of trying, it turned out not to be possible. The warehouse in Texas to which Chris was originally assigned is finally opening this month.
Of the different options available, moving back to Texas to finish the program seems to be the best one for Chris. He made that decision less than two weeks ago while Debbie and I were on vacation in Idaho. So this change has come upon us abruptly. We thought Chris would live at home with us for another year or more. But that is not to be. He is leaving home again. And this time, it seems for good.
A year ago when Chris left for Indiana and then Texas, he was single. There was the chance that he would return home between finishing the program and starting the next phase of his life and career.
This time, Samantha, his girlfriend, is joining Chris in Texas. They have decided to use this occasion to start a new life together and plan to live in Texas for at least a year. And based on recent conversations, it looks very favorable that they will be engaged by the end of this year.
So today, they start the three-day trip to Texas and a new life together.
I am so grateful for the last few months Chris was at home. We all wish it could have been longer. But now Chris’ room is empty again. Almost all of his belongings are packed in his small car and Samantha’s dad’s truck. For him, his empty room is a symbol of the exciting life that awaits him with the woman he loves. For us who remain behind, his empty room echoes with memories of conversations, prayers, joys, disappointments, laughter, and tears.
Debbie and I share in Chris’ excitement. We will be praying for him and Samantha, hoping for their best, and looking forward to their visits in the near future. But today, as we say goodbye again, we know it is different. Almost twenty-three years of Chris living at home with us ends today. And we are very, very sad. Our son and friend has left and we miss him terribly.