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Home > Not directly related to my budget but I'm so proud of my son

Not directly related to my budget but I'm so proud of my son

April 4th, 2015 at 07:54 am

A little background - My youngest son turned 30 last September. He celebrated on the Appalachian Trail, about halfway through an often miserable but always joyful southbound through hike that started on the first of June and ended the week of Thanksgiving. He wasn't with biological family for that milestone day but was with trail family, friends he'd made during the journey.

He's always been something of a free spirit, wanting to travel and spend time with Mother Nature. He's been a welder, a retail worker, a hardware store worker, a driver for the intoxicated but always a helper of people. His heart is with writing, though. And he's darn good at it.

He'd given up his apartment and job to go on the trail so when the hike was over he stayed with me for recuperation. During those couple of months he continued teaching himself programming, something he'd started awhile back, and learned so very much. He also spent a lot of his days writing. After he felt rested, he moved to the western part of the state to help his father, who isn't in the best health, with his business. He's been writing and hiking, using his skills and loving being outside. For several reasons the move might not have been the best thing. His dad doesn't really "get" him and although they love one another there's a bit too much conflict. Also, the business is slow right now and my son isn't earning money. He started to lose the sense of accomplishment the hike had given him and that made me so very sad for him.

The situation finally got to him and he applied for and got a job in Utah at a therapeutic wilderness camp for teens. He'll have several duties but a primary one will be responsibility for said teens during outdoor exploration. Wow, just wow. My son is moving to Utah to work with belligerent and troubled teenagers! He'll work several days then have several days off, giving him time to continue learning programming and to write the book that's been burning its way through his soul. He'll also have time to hike. And hike. And hike. And hopefully he'll be a good influence on some of those young people and help them find their way. To top it off, he'll get paid a pretty good wage to do something he seems to be cut out to do.

It won't be easy, I'm sure. Again he'll be far from home and family and he'll be smack dab in the middle of teens who don't want to be where they are. I don't envy him that. But what an opportunity for him!

For those of you who pray, please send out a few for Jon.

He tried to keep a blog while on the trail but the internet service was iffy at best most of the time and it was very difficult but if you'd like to read about his journey on the trail, you can do so here:


The last entry was in December but if you go backwards you can read about some of the amazing adventures he had. Lions, and witches, and bears. Oh my!

Click on "images" to see some beautiful photos.

And to make this somewhat PF related, I helped finance the hike. It cost a lot more than I thought it would but I'd do it all again in a heartbeat.

10 Responses to “Not directly related to my budget but I'm so proud of my son”

  1. monkeymama Says:

    That's great!

    I was thinking I had a friend on the trail at the same time, but I forget what year it is. !!! That was 2013...

  2. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    Amazing. And good luck and prayers. Time for a new journey.

  3. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    That was fun looking at his photos! You know what? My son has also done some epic journeys. He says knowing that he can do something so long and difficult has helped him even in his very academic profession. Accomplishments like your son's are of the type that embed in the soul for a lifetime.

  4. PatientSaver Says:

    I have a soft spot in my heart for people like your son. Becus that's how I was when I was younger, following my heart and every day's adventure.

  5. CB in the City Says:

    I think he inherited his writing talent from his mom!

  6. Ima saver Says:

    Congratulations to your son on his new job!!

  7. frugalredhead Says:

    Your son sounds like an amazing person Smile I grew up not far from the Appalachian trail in NY, and have hiked small parts of it but to do the whole thing is incredible. He is very lucky to have the support from you to enable him to do what he loves and is passionate about. Best of luck to him!

  8. DeniseNTexas Says:

    Thanks, y'all.

    MM, lol on forgetting the year. How neat to have a friend who's been on the AT. I can't hear enough of Jon's stories about it.

    LivingAlmostLarge, thank you so much!

    Joan.of.the.Arch, my son says that, also. Knowing you can survive for almost 6 months, walking over 2000 miles, does much for the self esteem. He knows now that he can do ANYTHING he sets out to do. What a feeling of accomplishment!

    Patientsaver, I was that way also but ended up getting married young and quickly having four children so I didn't get to explore and see the things I wanted to. Perhaps that's why I'm so supportive of Jon. He's unattached and might as well enjoy all he can!

    CB, awww thanks! That's very sweet but I'm not sure how true it is. When my kids were growing up we had books, notebooks, journals, writing paper, and pens all over the place. I homeschooled them for some years and their father and I encouraged independent thinking, self expression, and writing. It's bitten me in the hiney a few times (especially when they were teens and really expressing the independent thinking lol) but I don't regret it at all. :-) Jon is very talented and I'm his biggest fan.

    Julie, thank you!

    Frugalredhead, thanks so much. He is pretty amazing. He's so interesting and creative and I can't help but encourage and support his adventurous ways. How fortunate you are to have grown up near the AT! The photos I've seen are just stunning.

  9. creditcardfree Says:

    I have a cousin that hiked the AT quite a few years back, maybe 10. It was a life changer for him. Also love the stories. Good luck to him on his journey in Utah.

  10. DeniseNTexas Says:

    CCF, almost everyone I've talked to or read about who has hiked it has said it's life changing. Honestly, I'm giving thought to tackling it myself. Not the entire trail but perhaps part of it. It's something I've been thinking about for quite awhile and now I really want to section hike some of it. :-)

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