The first weekend of the Fall is coming to a close. In a few hours the kids will be showered, shaved and shipped off to sleep. Ok, there will not be any shaving but that won't last forever. I know this because yesterday my son was an infant who slept upon my shoulder and now he is a fourth grader who will be a teen tomorrow.
He and his sister are playing together now. They are just across the room playing some kind of board game and for the moment they couldn't be happier. But like the weather in Seattle this change in a moment. One gesture, one word or the dog can set off a series of screams. These two have a love/hate relationship that isn't that different from the one I had with my own sisters.
It makes me proud to see them grow like this. They have a bond that will not be broken and I rest comfortably that they will always look out for each other. Doesn't mean that I won't continue to stress the importance of family and why they need to look out for each other.
There are changes looming just around the bend. I don't have to look hard to see storm clouds on the horizon. No psychic is needed to recognize the signs, although I wouldn't complain if I had a crystal ball to use to see the future. But the storm clouds I see obscure my vision and the fog that already surrounds me presents more immediate challenges.
Some of the challenges that have been presented to me have gotten old and I have reached a point where I require resolution. There are Rules For Life that I am working on. Steps to be taken and things to be done because Happiness Requires Action. These are not empty words or promises to me. I said what I mean and I mean what I said.
Being a child means that sometimes you are forced to accept changes that you might not always like. In that respect it isn't much different from being an adult, except you don't have the life experience to carry you through. Although one could argue that might be a good thing.
As their father I am frustrated that I cannot do more to prepare them for some of these things. But that is one of the challenges of having your vision obscured by the unknown. It is possible that some of these things will not cause the sort of uproar I am concerned about. Things could go far more smoothly, but they might not. Fear of the unknown plays a role here, that is for sure.
So I am working hard on trying to do what I can to protect them from these things. And part of that means not saying anything until the moment is at hand. They don't need a ton of details- just enough to get through those moments. The most important thing is to give them a feeling of strength and security.
Time will tell...
"When you're in jail, a good friend will be trying to bail you out. A best friend will be in the cell next to you saying, 'Damn, that was fun'." — Groucho Marx
Children and Changes
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