Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Rocksalot Cottage: A Time of Reflection

Thoughts of the last Friday invade my brain.  How?  Why?  Questions that everyone has voiced lately.  Shock.  Horror.  Grief.  All rolled into one.

One question surfaced,"What was I thinking when I attended school as first grader?  What were the promises of my generation?"  Pursue your passions.  Get good grades.  Try to be good.  Play.  Respect your elders.  Figure out where Jack and Jill lived and why didn't they turn on the faucet?  Life seemed simple.  Life seemed to be encouraging.  No where on the curriculum did the school offer a class on "duck and cover". 

Today's children have to be so much wiser at a much earlier age.  It's amazing how modern day parents survive parenthood.  Teachers cram as much knowledge into these minds as they can and when the day is done, parents need to round out with extracurricular studies, such as, music, sports, Scouts, and learn safety skills.  There's so much competition out there that at times life feels like a race to an education, rather than a right to an education.

Our safety  skills involved natural disaster drills.  The basic hurricane, tornado, lightning, and fire drills that have been in  place for a long time.  Now our children have added bomb scare drills and assault evacuations to the list.  In my wildest dreams, I would never have imagined such.  We never thought of bomb scares and certainly couldn't pronounced, let alone understand, assault evacuations to the list.  Our big no-nos focused upon talking to strangers or being offered candy by a stranger.

Sitting at my little desk with my oversized #2 pencil from its shiny shoe box, the world offered a promise.  Study hard, get a good job.  The world will be a better place as you age.  Things would get better.

What do we have to do to make this happen all these years later?  How do we provide the safety and security a child needs to grow and thrive?  How will be address the evil stranger who no longer carries candy, but a few assault weapons.

I'm glad I'm not in first grade any more.

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