Friday, September 13, 2013

Friendships from afar....

So, I've had a few people ask me (email, messages, etc) how Ashton's handling Marc being away at Georgia Tech and how he's adjusted.


Far better than I could have hoped for!

These are just a few moments that I've been able to capture in the last 4 weeks since Marc left. The first is a picture of Ashton's first letter he received. He's since received a couple of more letters, and one time, even got 3 letters at one time (also pictured), WOW! He's talked to Marc on the phone after the Rock'n'Roll 1/2 marathon (pictured) and he's Skyped MANY times and has gotten quite a few "double high 5s"! Ashton even gave up his usual morning tablet time one morning, to sit down and write Marc a letter so I could get it in the mail that day for him.

Ashton doesn't get upset anymore when Marc and him "hang up" after a Skype call, and he really, only got very upset, once. Marc got back on Skype and Ashton was fine after hanging up that second time. Ashton's gotten into the habit of writing letters if he hasn't gotten to talk to Marc in a few days, which is really helping with his handwriting. He's started writing smaller with each individual letter and is writing longer letters too. He's even taken to sending a few drawings here and there, which I know Marc enjoys. I like to call Ashton's morning ritual of messaging Marc, Kaylie (Marc's amazing, and in Ashton's words "she's pretty", girlfriend) and Amory with silly messages and smilies, his equivalent of a morning cup of coffee. Whether he gets a reply right away or not (today for instance, he and Marc got to chat for a few minutes), doesn't seem to matter. It's just part of his morning routine now and he loves reading the responses whenever he gets them. Ashton's also gotten a bit of a crush on Kaylie, which is so precious! Ashton even told me at one point that he wanted Kaylie to take him for pizza, but has said Marc can come too! Bahaha! Ladies man, that one is! :)

Marc has done everything he can to include Ashton in his college life. I know he's got pictures of him and Ashton up in his dorm room and I know Ashton's a well-known figure in Marc's life. Ashton loves talking to Marc on Skype, but the smile he gets on his face when Marc starts introducing him to whatever group of friends is around, is so sweet. It's like he realizes he's being included even from 9hours away and he loves the attention, smiles, waves and high 5s he gets from all of Marc's "cool college friends". It makes him feel a part of things which is amazing.

Yes, Ashton still misses Marc very, very much and will say so a few times a week. I realized a couple of weeks after Marc left, that maybe a good thing for Ashton would be a countdown calendar to when he'll get to see Marc again. So I printed out the calendars for September to December and wrote down the countdown in the boxes for each date. Ashton gets to place a sticker each day to help him count down the days. We're at 92 days now and counting down.

Ashton chose the Spongebob stickers and loves them, so no judging! :) It keeps him happy and it gives him a concrete date to count down to. Marc also surprised Ashton a week or so ago with the news that he (Marc) will be pushing him in a race when he comes home in December! Ashton can't wait! I will say that Ashton's adjusted to not having Marc push him in the past 2 races pretty well. While the last race was slightly crazy for me (it was just a longer ride for Ashton and I didn't know the guys who pushed him as well as we, obviously, know Marc). It worked out, Ashton had a blast and that's all that really matters in the end. He had fun and these races are about him.

Ashton has also adjusted to high school fantastically, much better than I had expected. I think that's helping with the whole transition. I don't expect every day to be rosey-posey days, but the amazing start he's had leads me to believe that this was very much, the right decision to make moving him back to our home district for high school. 

So all in all, the transition has went far better than I had hoped. Ashton received 2 Georgia Tech surprises this week in the mail, a Georgia Tech t-shirt and a really cool hoodie. He can't wait to wear them! He knows he can message Marc whenever he wants to and that he can Skype with Marc as long as he's not too busy. Even the other day when Marc was busy, they got to Skype for a few minutes - I think they were both missing each other a lot so they needed that face to face time. Two happy smiles emerged from that quick Skype call, so it worked. :)

Ashton's got 3 more months to go until he seems Marc again. I figured this first month would be the hardest, but it went so much better than I had hoped, so I assume the next 3 months will hopefully fly by. He's keeping busy with school and his New Energy P.O.W.E.R. running group and that's helping. Thank you for anyone who has asked and wondered! :) Fortunately, I'm happy to report that he's doing AWESOME! :)

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