Friday, September 12, 2008

"Update on the life of your college student"

This was the title of the most recent email from Oldest Daughter, now in her second week of classes at Oberlin College/Conservatory. It was one of those emails which just blesses the heart of a parent, one which you read more than a couple of times, and then since you just have to share it with someone, you forward it to the grandparents!

I am very thankful that Dear Husband and I were able to travel to Oberlin for the parent orientation a few weeks ago and help Oldest Daughter settle into her new surroundings before returning to Jordan last week, and so now, when she tells us of her life at Oberlin, her classes, her teachers, her friends, and happenings around the Con, we are able to understand a little better what she is talking about, having visited the campus and having met some faculty and friends.

So here is Oldest Daughter's essential update, annotated by Mom:

Private Teacher: Oldest daughter has had two private lessons with her new teacher (as well as daily group lessons during orientation week) and feels that she will work well with her teacher. She describes him as "very intelligent, thought out, and intentional in his teaching, as well as hard to please--all good qualities." He is very happy with Oldest Daughter's left hand (as in how it plays the violin) and sends his compliments to her former teacher.

Hanging out in the conservatory (Con) lounge

Classes: Lots of work, lots of quizzes, but Oldest Daughter is learning lots. So far she is pacing herself well and keeping up with homework.

Happy Roommates--a great match

Roomate: Oldest Daughter couldn't have been blessed with a better one! They've already talked about rooming together next year. Her roommate is a fellow Con student (voice) an international student (Canadian), and they have lots in common, most importantly their faith in God.

Music Nerds

Friends: When I attended college, I never went anywhere near a music class and I didn't have musician friends but I did notice that many of the music majors hung out together and they seemed to be having lots of fun together. Even as an outsider (like, way outside) I could see that their music somehow bound them together. And so Oldest Daughter is enjoying being a music nerd (her own words) and spending time with lots of other music nerds. And nerd is definitely not meant pejoratively here--I thoroughly enjoyed meeting some of her friends on campus and found them to be very 'cool', articulate, and interesting people.

Spiritual Life: Oldest Daughter and her roommate are attending Oberlin Christian Fellowship (OCF), a weekly Bible study in their dorm (studying the book of Acts), and are attending church together on Sunday mornings. They also joined an online prayer group so that they can pray for each other.

Rest: This is the only area of Oldest Daughter's collegiate life which doesn't receive an A grade, but it seems she is doing the best she can for the time being. Dear Husband added up Oldest Daughter's class, rehearsal, and personal practice hours: 51 hours a week--not counting homework. It doesn't help that she receives only one credit for chamber orchestra, which meets three times a week, two hours a time. Such is the life of music major. She pretty much works from morning till night five days a week, finishes up homework and practicing on Saturday, and rests on Sunday--mostly.

Though many miles now separate us and we miss her very much, we rejoice in all that God has provided for Oldest Daughter and for the wonderful opportunities she is experiencing to learn, to grow, and to mature. We are also thankful for Vonage, Skype, email, and Facebook--so many great, easy ways to stay in touch.


Jenny said...

Thanks for the update on Lauren. I had to laugh at the music nerds title. But only because Sarah describes the kids in her honors group as eccentric. It's wonderful to see them enjoy the gifts they've been given.

A Circle of Quiet said...

Great to hear your update, Melissa! We'll look forward to more on the Oberlin Adventure.