This is the world my kids are growing up in. The world I am raising them in. A world I will have to explain and analyze and understand myself.
Even if I don’t.
I am deeply saddened by the natural catastrophe in Japan. Angry that it had to happen, frustrated that enough can not be done fast enough, and impressed with the resolve the country has to make the best of an impossibly horrible disaster.
It is not lost on me that this will not be the last disaster ever to strike the world… and the next would might even hit in our own backyard.
I watch the coverage and I let me children see some of it. Though I worry about nightmares and confusion, I want them to know that life is not all Oreos and cartoons. I want them to learn sympathy, empathy, and that there is a whole world out there dealing with unpleasant things. I want them to ask questions and more questions. Age appropriate, of course, but still lots of questions. Because with questions come knowledge and the more they know, the more they can internalize and respect situations as they grow.
And I want to be able to explain it as best I can. Without instilling fear, but still breeding a desire to help and pray.
I am also going to have to explain a completely baffling culture that elevates celebrities. Especially an unstable, self – absorbed, deeply disturbed man who has hijacked the media with his fanatical antics and hysterical insanity.
I’ll have to explain Charlie Sheen to my kids one day. Or someone like him. And why our culture even gives him airtime. More airtime than most news stories. And I don’t know why, after airing his dirty laundry, jumping on a building with a machete, and filing a lawsuit that is clearly in the best interest of lining his pockets, he has a tour where tickets sold out on a matter of hours. All so people could go watch him spout his opinion?
It is craziness to me.
But I am going to have to explain it one day. How the freedom of choice in our country leads some to choose paths that we may not always agree with. And despite some natural instincts, it is not our place to judge, only to try and be better than we think we can. And truly leave a legacy of self – respect, family values, and a healthy belief in learning from other’s mistakes.
As a mom these two stories have little similarities in content, but mirror each other on the complexity of explanation to my children. They bring out the absolute best things about humanity and its ability to cope and adjust but also the worst parts of a culture that can sometimes thrive on mockery and vanity.
There are always going to be stories like this. The heart – breaking, the inspirational, and the unbelievable. Stories that explain little, but require much explanation. And as a mom, I am going to have to have some answers. As a mom, I am going to have to have some insight. As a mom, I am going to have to offer some comfort, some knowledge, and a clear conclusion to my reasonings.
It is my job description, after all. Moms guide children to understand, don’t they? Even if they don’t understand themselves?
This is the world we live in. This is the world I have to raise them in.
A world that has to have room for Japan, Charlie Sheen, and a mom.
What a beautiful post girl! It truly is. I’d do the same thing with Sam if she was old enough. You are a role model mom for me to look up to and to aspire to be! LOVE you!
WOW! Thank you Erin!! I don’t know what I aspire anyone to be but I am truly humbled by your comment! LOVE you too! ;)
Amazing post. It is a very complex world we live in, there is so much I do not have the words to explain to my lil girls because like you I do not fully understand it myself. I applaud what you are doing. I have not let my girls see the footage of Japan – I fear the questions, possible worries and nightmares. You are brave and tackling this head on even when you know you do not have all the answers & I respect and admire that.
Thank you Bernadette! I sincerely am touched by your comments. I think it is a choice I am still waiting to see the result on. They pray at night and they include the Japanese, so hopefully the positive affect is happening.
Thank you for reading and retweeting…. I appreciate it so much!
great post… I know what you mean. Some things just defy explanation, the level of some people’s vanity and complete devastation of a country are two of those things.
Great post and I love your line “it is not our place to judge, only to try and be better than we think we can.” I think many of us, and by us I mean moms, believe so completely in what we think to be right that we forget that others might feel the exact opposite and so long as we do no harm we have to accept that others are going to disagree. I really love your post and that you brought the two biggest headlines together because let’s face it right, wrong, agree, disagree – the public seems to be interested in Charlie just as much as what is going on in Japan.
Isn’t that the saddest truth? That these two headlines do match so well together?
Thank you for reading and sharing! I sincerely appreciate it!
Great thought provoking post. There’s a lot out there in the big wide world that defies logic or reason and you’re right that as Mums it’s our job to try and make sense of it all for ourselves and our children. At the same time, I also celebrate the diversity of this planet we sit on and the freedom a great deal of us have to be who we are regardless of other people’s opinions. While I want to instil my values into my children, I want them to understand that too.
I totally agree!! Thank you for reading and commenting!
This is a BIG world with a lot of diversity and opinion. Our children have to be open minded and able to conclude based on their beliefs. But I do wish I did not have explain things that I do not totally get. I wish it were a little easier to teach so many diverse options!! ;)
I am coming to see you now!