When something is meant to be there will be an easy flow. It will feel natural like breathing. I have heard this for years and at this point in my life, because I am open to believing, it is what I experience almost daily. Sometimes situations are so unexpectedly joyous one has to think it must be destined. My family is fortunate to be a part of such an event.
When we bought our house in 1997 I was thrilled to have a guest bedroom. I dreamed that our family and friends would come to visit. So many folks have busy lives and careers that it didn’t seem to happen, all but for one welcome returning guest. Bryan’s former college roommate and dearest friend Mike, who was in our wedding 25 years ago, has visited our home a few times a year for the past several years. Mike lives in Orange County, CA but works in the Bay Area frequently. When he is in town he generously takes our family to dinner and we catch up on the details of both his life and ours. He warmly calls our third bedroom, “My Room.” Mike has a lovely wife and two teenage sons, one a year older than our daughter Mariah and one a year younger. On every visit we will share stories about the kids, their education, interests, and personality traits and generally learn about the boys from a distance. His wife joins him about once a year so she and I catch up on a lot of missed information. Their handsome family picture is displayed on an end-table in “Mike’s Room” and I have found myself thinking how much I would love to meet his sons.
On one visit about three years ago Mike told us about a marvelous on-line career assessment program that their school district gives every student beginning in the 9th grade. The link to the site is www.kudernavigator.com. He showed me on his lap-top the results of his oldest son’s tests. I was impressed when I saw the results of 99.9% in IT. It wasn’t surprising to Mike as his son is quite proficient in drawing and animation. This brought his son John to life for me when Mike talked about his talent in art and love of writing, both of which are my passions as well. I couldn’t wait to share this information with Mariah and soon after Mike left she eagerly wanted to take the career assessment tests.
One morning while I was out shopping she clicked on to this marvelous site and spent about one hour and a half answering questions dealing with her academic knowledge, passion, personality, and many other topics to properly assess her future career capabilities. When I returned she said, “Mom, look at this. I scored 99.9% in IT.” What she also was considering as a career that of a marine biologist didn’t even come close. That day ideas crystallized for our daughter and she has thought of nothing else but her goal of becoming a video game designer. She lives and breathes anything connected to the gaming world. She found that one of the best career colleges for game design was the Academy of Art University in San Francisco right across the Bay Bridge. As a family we have taken two tours of the wonderful school and enrolled Mariah in their Pre-College program for six weeks this summer. What a deal! You pay registration and admission fees only and high school students can take up to four classes which are taught by the same professionals and teachers and who teach the college classes. Mariah is looking forward to this experience but has wished she had a friend to travel to the city with on Bart. She said to me, “I think I might be the only girl in the game design classes.”
A month ago Mike was in town but only had enough time to play golf with Bryan. During the day Bryan told Mike about this wonderful summer opportunity. His son John will be a senior next year and as a family they are beginning to investigate the best schools for him and his interest in animation. He was intrigued with the Academy’s summer program, called his wife immediately and within three days John was enrolled in the school and will be our guest for 6 weeks in “His dad’s room.” We are all thrilled. Mariah will have a buddy to share school experiences, to travel together to the city, and have a new friend who loves Anime as much as she does.
Last week the family flew up for one day to attend the school orientation and one of the guides asked if John and Mariah were brother and sister. My thought was, “They could be.” At lunch the two teenagers talked incessantly and seemed quite at home with each other. Later that day I asked Mariah if she and John had discussed Japan and her answer was no. Two kids living 500 miles apart shared an awesome experience although not at the same time. John two years ago and Mariah last summer each participated in the amazing People to People program founded by Dwight D. Eisenhower as student ambassadors to Japan. The home-stays were top on both their lists as the most pleasurable part of the trip. I feel certain that when John arrives this weekend it will be the beginning of a marvelous journey that he and Mariah will share this summer; one that I call serendipity.