The greatest joy in any parents’ life is their children. I am no exception. Don and I were married 17 years before Daniel came along and he is my reason for being. He comes before all others and yes, he has me all wrapped around his little finger. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
When people criticize parents about how they are raising their kids, me included, I always say, “He’s my responsibility and I can screw him up any way I want to.” Will I pay for that? Of course. Will I do a great job, of course not! I will do my best, however, my very best. I made that promise on day one.
The now sixteen year old ‘joy of my life’ never complained when I pulled him out of the house he has always known, the school he has always known, away from his forever friends and drug him along on this adventure of mine. He admitted to being anxious over the move, the new school, the new ‘life’, but he didn’t rain on my parade. In fact, I think he was in a way, looking forward to it. They say your kids join you in your life until they get lives of their own, but you cannot help considering their needs and feelings when you make monumental decisions that affect them.
The first big disappointment came when we found out that our eventual internet service would not support his online video games. This was huge. It’s still huge. He was very upset, told me so, but did not rant and rave, did not complain, did not make me feel like a thoughtless parent. I felt that way none-the-less. In fact, he has been such a good sport about it, I am wondering when the ax will fall. I hope it never does.
The second thing is that we no longer have television. When we sold our house in May, we moved into the travel trailer behind mom’s house and didn’t have television hook-up. We watched a little bit at Grandma’s but since the video games were going to be extremely limited after the move, he spent most of his time playing online with his friends. When we moved north, we left the TV in storage and have not acquired the expense of satellite TV yet. When the house is finished I am sure we’ll get TV, but for now, we have real conversations in the evening, retire to our books or go kayaking. Another big change, but for the better, I think.
Last year in his second year of wood shop at school, somebody donated a lathe to the school’s wood shop program. The kid’s loved it. These guys came in and taught the kids how to turn wood and make writing instruments. Daniel took it one step further and started turning acrylics and making the most beautiful pens. He really enjoyed it. So when we toured his new school and found out they have an extensive wood shop, he was very pleased. Third disappointment is that in this Junior year of school, he is not allowed to take wood shop. He has to fill his new college bound requirements (more than Nevada requires), take two history classes and a foreign language. Now school sucks!
So, to make the world seem brighter and a little more fun than just a day in the woods and kayaking and the opportunity to hunt . . . (sarcasm added), Daniel took the money he earned this summer and we went to Spokane and he bought himself a wood lathe. He brought it right home and started turning wood. I am so impressed with what he can do, I cannot wait to start ordering Christmas presents! He has a real talent for turning wood and he truly enjoys it. So maybe the woods aren’t so bad after all. Maybe there IS more to life than video games. This mom truly hopes so.