Being a grown-up is hard. Particularly when you feel you have to be a grown-up for other people who should be doing their own adulting by now. Boundary violations run rampant. The seeds of resentment are planted. You’ve learned that you are mostly powerless and that growth only comes from within. Fearing for the relationship we can cling tighter or let go. Clearly, the time has come to reset boundaries and let people do their own adulting. That’s when it gets easier.
I can’t help but think something is missing in the ongoing gun debate. Sadly, we know well all the tired mantras. We can talk for ever about whether guns kill people or people kill people, how seat belt and air security laws work or how drug laws don’t, whether a good guy with a gun is helpful or just makes things worse, whether we should put money into text books or armaments for teachers (I say “we” because, sadly, there are people out there pushing for us Canadians to have concealed carry and semi-automatic weaponry). The one thing that we rarely hear about is how to change the culture of violence. The very idea that the solution to school shootings is to arm teachers speaks volumes about the degree to which guns are venerated in American culture. Thoughts and prayers won’t make that change. What can help encourage change, and what exists – and needs to be preserved – in Canada, Australia, and much of Europe, are laws and lawmakers that say “this is not okay”. This isn’t about using laws simply to change point-of-purchase decisions but to use legislation as a way of influencing culture and opinion in the long term. “Laws don’t stop bad guys” may be true but it is worth considering whether they might change the culture for the better.
Apparently I’m a hopeless romantic. I love watching the Winter Olympics. I really enjoy the display of skill. The amazing speeds of the luge, bobsled, and ski events. The strength and grace in speed skating. I love the strategy in curling. The freestyle skiing and boarding events are loads of fun and the mayhem in the snowboard cross is thrilling. For me, however, being invited in to that intimate space in the ice dance is the best four minutes of the Games. Thank you, Virtue and Moir, for your excellence and your passion.
I’ve been mulling over detachment today. I am mired in a web of over-attachments. I’m heavily invested emotionally in how my young adults are approaching their lives. I worry about whether I’m doing too much or too little. I worry about setting boundaries and I worry, a lot, about breaking relationships if I do. I worry and try to control my partner’s response to, well, all these things. It isn’t helpful, it isn’t productive, and it isn’t loving. Detaching, letting go, will free everyone, including me, to live authentically. It is clearly time to stop mulling and start practicing.
I’ve been considering how I might approach blogging with a more thematic approach. It occurred to me today that I probably write too much. To be more precise, I rarely write but when I take it on, words come pouring out. It is possible that the ideas lose some value when the point gets lost in an avalanche of text. It followed then, that maybe it would be fun to intentionally write only a paragraph in each blog. Short, sweet, focused and hopefully more frequent. So here it, the first paragraph.