Friday, May 04, 2012

Into the Dangerous World

On Sunday I got out the sidewalk chalk so the little baby granddaughter and I could draw on my driveway and sidewalk.  I love writing on the sidewalk.  We used to do that when we were kids.  We would take a stone and etch a hopscotch board onto a driveway or sidewalk and play for hours.  Imagine, being entertained for hours by a simple stone and a flat surface!

It is such a shame that kids don't get to play anymore.  They are shuttered indoors, participating in activities designed by their mothers, fathers, and caretakers.  They frequently have their noses glued to an electronic device.  They are not allowed to get out in the sunshine without sunscreen.  Can't ride bikes without helmets.  Their adults manage the schedules of "play dates" and other commitments.

My kids grew up during the first phase of this new paradigm of raising kids.  They grew up in the era of the first "milk carton kids."  Yes, I was terrified by this.  But no, I did not allow it to change our behavior.  My daughters always had roller skates and entertained themselves for hours roller skating outdoors.  We moved around a lot and wherever we went, after a few months all the kids had roller skates.  It was delightful.  My son played army with his friends, and was always dressed in camo.  I think it is so hilarious that he has dressed exactly the same way for his entire life.

My alcoholic daughter went a little bit nuts when she was a teenager.  In fact, she went so nuts that she might be considered every parent's nightmare.  She spent most of her teens in hospitals, treatment centers, rehabs, and residential facilities for teenagers.  She would thrive under the structure imposed by these treatments.  However, the minute she was set free, she would go nuts again.  She learned nothing about making decisions.  I think now with 3.5 years of sobriety and at the age of 33, she is just beginning to learn to self-regulate.

Her twin sister apparently thrived in this dangerous environment I provided for them.  She is a successful young woman.

Somehow we all survived all the hazards we have faced.  I am so so so so so grateful to have grown up in the 50s and 60s and that I have the scars to prove it!

So, I shall step out into the dangerous world today.  I have a battle to face this morning.  I am so fortunate to have a boss who supports me.  I will need her support today.  After next Wednesday I will have approximately two weeks of relative peace.  I will get to go out and about and meet with people and work on real things.  I will get to sit down and actually think about my work instead of rushing to meet deadlines.  And then it will begin again....

I am grateful to be sober.  I am grateful for a loving God who always has my back.  I am grateful to be listening to birds singing this morning.  I am grateful that in a few minutes I will be walking the downtown streets that I love so.  This is my city.  The city where I got sober, and that will always make it HOME in my heart.


Anonymous said...

thank you for the information

Mary said...

Just finished catching up and wanted to let you know once again how much I enjoy your writing. I believe I've commented in the past that my life experience is very similar to yours and so often I find myself nodding and thinking that here is another sober woman who lives and loves sober. Thank you for sharing your journey.

Mary LA said...

Amazing what we survive -- out here it is very dangerous because of violence and crime, yet you get the same risk-takers running wild.