The title of this post made me chuckle, because I happen to know a large group of people for whom blogging is always frivolous. But I mean frivolous in the wake of what happened on Friday in Connecticut. Writing about writing, reading, giving–it all feels a bit extraneous and irrelevant.
I dreamed about blogging last night. In my sleep, I tried to work out how I might tie a school shooting to a blog that’s mostly about writing. I came up with something in the night that seemed to make sense, only when I woke up, it made no sense. I kept thinking/dreaming about how it only took my son, L., three years to learn what a gun is. Over the summer sometime he started referring to “shooter things.” Last night, watching a nature documentary, a man with a rifle appeared onscreen. “Do you know what that man is holding?” I asked. “A gun,” he said.
Did I think I could shield him from guns forever? Silly me. I keep sneaking listens on the radio, but turning it off when he comes in the room. L. has been known to hear a brief snippet on NPR and repeat it back to me, verbatim. I guess I just don’t want him to hear that five year olds were shot, because I think it might actually mean something to him.
In my dream, “gun” was a word L. had learned, and the fact that it was a word tied it to this blog in some way. Right: in daylight, it doesn’t make sense.
But then, none of it does, and I guess that’s the point.
This fall under the idea of there is no real life manual for raising a child. The moment that our children start interacting with other people we lose our grips as the teacher, influence and as the parent slowly but surely. I have three of my own and have come to realize this early on. I share with you that keeping the dialog open has seemed to work for me and my children. I much prefer teaching them while they have an open ear to listen.
This whole ordeal is tragic for sure.
While there is a line somewhere that has to do with his future life in this world, I have absolutely no interest in explaining any of this to my 3-year-old son. Turning off the radio is a far superior option.