Lighten Up, Little Susie

It’s a little disconcerting to realize that several people have found my blog by googling the term kids in jail.  I deserve this, I guess, because I wrote a blog post called “Not Dead or in Jail: The Role of Outcomes in Family Life,” in which I talked about the probably outrageously low bar I put on the results of my parenting.

So it occurred to me.  I really need to lighten up.  Be less intense.  Stop talking about jail and death.  Trauma and treatment and scary child welfare people and other things that go bump in the night….and remember my two little buckeroos. 

This is a picture of the 6-year old Nelson and the 4-year old Joey in Laramie, Wyoming.  They’re wearing their fresh off the rack, gen-u-wine cowboy hats and their little six-shooters.  With no prompting, they caught the pose – the cool cowboy pose.  The hands on the hips, the looks.  Oh gosh, they’re so tough in their little jean shorts. 

Right after this, we went to a rodeo where, because of our unique family composition, we attracted more interest than the bullriding — but I don’t want to go back to the ‘dark side’ here. 

Anyway, I remember this.  How they looked. How they talked.  How they smelled.  I remember paddling with them in a canoe in some river in the Tetons and beaching the canoe on a sandbar and having lunch.  I remember days of camping with no shower and then letting them roll down a dirt hill 20 times just before we hit the showers just to see how filthy boys could actually get.  Very.

I remember then always walking around with an enormous sense of gratitude.  These kids just dropped out of the sky, they were adorable and they were mine.  Yipes.  What luck.

Still true.  But, as you can see, picture’s a bit blurry.  🙂

4 Comments on “Lighten Up, Little Susie

  1. You’re right about those boys and their instant buckaroo pose. Having spent my life in the west going to rodeos, I’m telling you they looked like they’d been raised on a ranch near Ten Sleep and participated in roundups since the age of two. As someone who never parented, I have only admiration for those of you who have.

  2. After years of remembering (with regret) all the things I did wrong and all the things I didn’t do, lately I have begun to let the good memories come in. Like you, I am remembering the fun times we had. I am also pushing my mind to remember the normal (read good) times when life just went on when I scolded and loved in pretty much equal portions. Both were necessary. I’ve finally decided that my children are responsible for the kind of persons they are – not my responsibility any longer. After all, they are all pushing 50. 😀

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