Thursday, October 20, 2005

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Getting started, letting go

One of the first difficulties in playing hide and seek with your child at Wal-Mart is that, by the rules of the game, you have to be out of sight of each other. There is something instinctual about not walking away from a child of six in a public sphere. Well, I say "instinctual" when perhaps I should say "habitual."

Because this is how they get you. Fifty years ago parents thought nothing of sending their children, even young children, out by themselves to run errands or just to play and be involved with the world. It's a matter of nostalgia these days where you will hear people say, "Well, that was a simpler time. There wasn't as much crime and you never heard anything about child abductions."

Exactly. You never heard about them, but they were happening. They've always happened.

The fact is, your child, my child, is extremely unlikely to be kidnapped by a stranger. It's something on the order of, or less likely than, being struck by lightening, however these days children are warned to talk to no one, they are patted down at schools; they are surrounded by enemies. As parents, by buying into the paranoia, we are crippling our children.

The question is: Why all the fear? Who does it benefit?

Some answers might be found if you look at where the money is going. Right now our federal gov't is debating whether and how much to cut from all the social programs we have in order to pay for Katrina reconstruction, however, in the few cases where someone suggested cutting a little from Homeland Security--well, you know intuitively that those suggestions didn't go over well.

The words "political suicide" come to mind.

But keep in mind that more people die on our roads every month than died in New York on September 11. Every Month.

So, back to the boy. I found a way inside myself to do it. I took careful consideration of the possible risks and decided to trust my head this time which told me that the fear is an illusion brought on by years of social programming.

If I'm going to help this boy fight the real evil he will face in life, not media evil, then I would have to push off of the life raft. I would have to let go of his hand and say, "OK. I'm it. You go hide, anywhere in the toy section, and I'll count to twenty and then try and find you."

I figured it would be best to start in a small area. Searching for a wiley six year old in the whole of a Super Wal-Mart would be daunting to say the least. Baby steps.

I let go of his hand.

Sunday, October 16, 2005


Here's a picture from Hulk's "coming out" party. We had a doctor friend come over to give Hulk those Botox injections he's been wanting which is why his smile looks more like a grimace. The doctor assured us that Hulk's smile will return in a couple of days.