September 16, 2014

Back to School - by Loretta Bouillon

I love the summer. It can be busy—or should I say just a different kind of busy? With our family vacation, all three kids working at the pool, aquafit, friends visiting, school prep and trying to chip away slowly (very slowly!) at various writing projects - the summer has just flown by. Physical, mental and emotional energy has been poured into preparing our oldest son for leaving for university, along with several of his friends who make up our youth group. Many changes, exciting for those leaving, but harder for those left behind.

Our family has recently taken Maxx, our 18 year old son, to University of Northern British Columbia at the end of August. I know that it is inevitable that all my children will leave, but the day has arrived where the first is actually leaving the nest. As hard as it is, these are a few of the things I am certain of:

1) I will miss Maxx terribly. The sound of his guitar through the walls, his steadfast quiet spirit, his voice of reason when I feel a little bit crazy, and his willingness to pray for me when I need it.

2) He will be okay. He is a capable, responsible, amazing young man who loves God and will seek his guidance continually. He is on the meal plan in residence. He will eat.

3) I will be okay. I will go into withdrawal at first, maybe cry in his room for a bit, but then come to appreciate his room as MY extra space where I can retreat to do my writing, reading or watch a movie that no one else wants to watch. He also has a pretty awesome ensuite powder room off his room which will also become MINE!

4) We will adjust. God will see us through the changes. We will all miss Maxx terribly; dinner for four instead of five just does not sound right, however we will look forward to when he comes home: Thanksgiving, Christmas and reading week.

Life will go on! I am still homeschooling two other wonderful kids that bring me great joy. Back-to-school has begun and I am hoping to fall into a schedule for my writing as the kids do their studies. In October, I am looking forward to attending the Surrey International Writer’s conference with my seventeen year old daughter (who I believe is a better writer than I am!). It will be our first writer’s conference and a mother/daughter get-a-way. I signed up for this conference before I found the InScribe group so unfortunately, as much as I would LOVE to do both conferences, it is not possible. However, the Inscribe conference is on the agenda for next year!

I am new to the writing industry. It has been less than a year where I have actually called myself a writer (although I have always written). My work in progress includes a couple of children’s picture books, magazine articles, devotions and the hope to write a series of devotions and a parenting book for parents with teens.

In this season, I am passionate about writing about my life with my teens and hope to encourage other parents in this stage of the parenting journey. Over the years, when people ask me about my children, they sometimes seem perplexed as to how my kids can appear happy and accomplished, yet they do not party or date (casually). They also actually enjoy being with their family. This has inspired me to write a book about parenting teens. I ask God that the message would be humble and bring Him glory as not to portray myself as some super-mom. My journey has been completely reliant on Him.

As my life revolves around the school year, so does my writing. My prayer is that that I will find the balance between teaching, parenting, supporting my husband and writing. When God calls us to particular ministries, He will equip us. That is my prayer for all of you, my fellow writers, that you will be carried by our wonderful God as you pursue all God has called you to be in the months ahead.


  1. Loretta,

    I so enjoyed your posting in which you give us a glimpse of your life at this stage.

    How often our experiences are intertwined with the sweet and the poignant... as loved ones die, new babies arrive, as one door closes new ones open ... making them bittersweet times.

    I've come to realize it's okay. I'm okay with that. I can let my sad moments be with me even as I let joy join the party.

    And, if I'm reading aright, you are wonderfully okay too. Okay with crying for homesickness, even as you rub your hands with glee at what is destined to become your new writing space.

    I'm so glad you shared this with us.

    Many blessings....
    Blog Moderator

  2. Thank you for the beautiful words of encouragement, Brenda. They were a blessing to me.

  3. This was lovely, Loretta. As one whose children have all left the nest, I understand your feelings. (Although sometimes they keep coming back home...) Also, one of these days we WILL get together since we live so close. I mean that!!!

  4. Loretta,
    Thanks for sharing your heart--the joys and lessons you are learning in parenting teens and then seeing them leave the nest. All three of mine have recently left as well so I can relate to your post. May God continue to help you find balance and JOY in that balance. Blessings.

  5. Sigh. One of our busy young adults just stopped in for a minute. That's nice, but he's all grown up and independent. Our two daughters are both married and each of them have three children of their own--just like we do. Sigh. The years go by quickly, but I'm glad we had those years with our basic five at home.

    No, times weren't always perfect, but they are often wonderful. They, our kids, and we all have gone through growing pains. Sigh. And as Bryan Norford intimidated in his blog above, we go through learning pains too, because band-aids don't solve problems any more. Nor do simplistic/formula answers. But thankfully we learn in and through love and we have a wonderful teacher in Christ our Lord. We can and do point to him. Praise! Thanks for sharing your loving story. May God bless you in your sacred space for writing, Loretta.

  6. Thank you everyone for your comments. I thought I only had one comment and then checked today not expecting anymore and found these wonderful encouraging words! Thank you!


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