My youngest son is now back home until Sunday. And the kinda funny thing is that he only has two weeks left of the semester after he goes back, so I’m going to be making this trip again in a little over two weeks.

It’s such a long drive, and even more so now that the sun goes down so early. Honestly, it’s completely exhausting to make the trip.

I got to talk to him a lot on the way back, though. It turns out that most of why he’s been less communicative lately is because he’s not on his phone as often. And ultimately, that’s a very good thing.

He’s not as miserable anymore, either physically or mentally. He’s made some very good friends on campus and is talking about next year like it’s a certainty that he’ll be there.

I talked to him a bit about the alternative of living at home and commuting to a local university that’s supposed to be less conservative and have a more diverse population. I acknowledged that driving him back and forth from there would be difficult but at least he could live at home with his cat.

He pointed out that being a minority at a fairly conservative university actually makes the minority community stronger. (As evidence, he shared with me some jokes he has with his FLAKE friends on their private Discord server, which were making fun of some of the conservative normies on campus.)

FLAKE is his freshman group of LGBT kids and it stands for freshman leaders for acceptance, kindness, and equality. He’s made several good friends in the group, including one who he says reminds him a lot of Chloe.

He’s getting out of his dorm room a lot more often and studying with friends. He really is starting to have the kinds of social experiences he’s always wanted to have.

I told him that the return on investment for an engineering degree from local university vs A&M wasn’t very significant and he said he highly doubted that because the Aggie ring (which is expensive and he’ll get it as a senior) opens doors in itself.

I do believe he’s probably right. But more than that, he believes it. He believes that the Aggie ring is worth pursuing.

We talked a bit about my husband’s health and he said that if my husband’s health takes a turn for the worse while he’s in school, he would have to take a semester off. But he did not say that he would quit school altogether.

What I want more than anything is to keep this house. When he graduates, he plans to stay in the area and says he’d live at home. The rent would be cheaper than getting his own place and he could work on paying down his student loans.

All of it sounded pretty good to me. I just have to make sure I can stay here that long, even if my husband doesn’t.

I’m trying to see myself as capable and in charge. I want to keep sending him money every month so that he doesn’t have to get a job while in school. To me, that is such an extreme luxury and privilege, and I’m so grateful to be able to give it to him while I can.

He’s really got a good chance to make it and I want to do everything I can to help.

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