Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Overwhelming


When Luke was really young — days, weeks old — we began taking walks with him around our neighborhood in the evenings when it wasn’t too hot outside.

I remember looking around on one of those first walks and feeling overwhelmed.

It was so hard to imagine that he knew virtually nothing; he had experienced virtually nothing. The scents in the air, the colors, the noises, the air itself — all new.

It was overwhelming; the sheer weight of the world. All of the things he needed to learn.

A few months ago, Luke was very interested in all the vehicles we would see while driving. We would tell him what they were and what they did.

We came upon a money car — the armored vehicles that transport money from place to place. As Luke loved pointing out the big bank near our house, we were excited to tell him about the money car.

And there was that weight again. How do I explain to him why the money car has to be armored? Not knowing what armor is, he hasn’t asked, and I haven’t explained.

But there was that overwhelming feeling again. The weight of all the bad things in the world. Things that sooner or later we will have to try to explain for him.

How do you explain these things?

One day, I envision my much-older children asking me about 9/11. About Columbine. About Boston. About the times when their uncles were at war.

And it’s overwhelming. To become a voice for that experience — my experience, which is not like others’ experiences. Not like the experiences of people who saw it in person, people who lived through it, the person who sat next to me when we saw that news on TV or Facebook or from the receiving end of instant messages sent from Iraq and Afghanistan. There’s a weight, a responsibility in becoming the voice of that experience to someone who was not here.

I want to do it right.

And it’s overwhelming.  

1 comment:

Carrie Worsencroft said...

This is such a scary world we are living in. I wish my children could live as we did as children. we are forced as parents to teach them an gaurd them.