Blame it on the Rain

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Do you want to know what happens when it rains for 13 days in September and 12 days, so far in October, with rain predicted for seven of the eight remaining days? I start to get a little depressed. That’s 32 days. Thirty-two out of a possible 61 days. That’s more than A MONTH OF RAIN. And that doesn’t count the days that were just cloudy without rain, but also without sun. I think I’ve seen the sun exactly five times this month. Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration. Maybe it was six times. And like most people, I am affected by not seeing the sun, and I get a little depressed. Because IT’S DEPRESSING to see this never-ending. Interminable. Ceaseless. Fecking rain. This is why I don’t live in Seattle! I need some melatonin people!

So I’ll blame it on the rain — you know, Milli Vanilli style (side note — did you know that “Blame it on the Rain” was written by the unbelievably talented Diane Warren? How the H did she ever get hooked up with Milli Vanilli??). Anyway, I think this rain, combined with my irrational pregnancy hormones, is making me overly emotional when I hear or read about bad things that happen to kids. I’ve always been a very empathetic person, but lately when I hear about this stuff I get SO SAD, and it affects me! I think about it for a long time. And not always real-life things. Things I see in TV dramas, like a 15-year-old homeless girl with a critically ill two-year old, or the mom who dies from a hospital mistake, leaving her little boy. But also the things that happen in real life. Like the Oprah episode I DVRed about Jaycee Dugard who was kidnapped by a convicted sex offender and held for 18 years. Or the latest of what seems to be a never-ending saga of murdered children in Florida, Somer Thomson. What IS it with Florida? And it’s not even just kidnapping. It’s abuse, or childhood cancer, or choking on food, or being born prematurely, or suffering severe complications from the flu! These things happen to people. Some of them have happened to people I know.

These terrible things, real or fictional, can make you crazy. Because as much as we protect ourselves by thinking, “That won’t happen to me,” that’s what Jaycee Dugard’s mom thought, and that’s what Somer Thomson’s mom thought. And when you actually allow your mind to go there, it’s unbelievably depressing. As a mother, it’s horrifying to realize that no matter how careful you are, or how good of a parent you are, you cannot protect your child from everything. That’s a horrible feeling!

Because as the parent, your Number One job is to protect your child. You can be SO careful, and yet your child could be kidnapped from her bedroom, like Elizabeth Smart. And you can’t prevent your child from getting cancer. And you also can’t be an overprotective, smothering hover parent who raises her child to be afraid of the world. So what do you do?

What do you do with those fears? I guess in the light of (another gloomy) day, I decided that the only thing you can do is acknowledge those fears, acknowledge that they may be possibilities, try to do everything you possibly can to prevent them, and pray that they don’t happen to you. And pray for the people that they did happen to. And maybe get a little light therapy?? Where can I do that …

But seriously, what do you moms do?

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About Jen

On the Night You Were Born is my attempt to chronicle my joys and frustrations of parenthood. I’m fairly new to the mommy blogosphere, and I read some brilliantly-funny mom blogs, so I hope to be half as witty, insightful, and I won’t say inspiring. The only thing I hope to inspire is for my 4k kid to cut the sass and my 2.5-year-old to stop being disruptive at bedtime. Alas, they both come with time.

2 responses »

  1. I may not be a mom, but I am training to deal with the worst case scenarios of many peoples’ lives. I’m training to deal with the end of their lives as well, not just how to prevent death. When people call me, it’s not because they had a happy experience. It’s because they’re terrified and in a life-and-death situation (Or at least feel like it’s life-and-death), and they don’t know what to do.

    In my mind, the best thing you can possibly do is teach your child how to deal with the inevitable bad things in life. Yes, people are going to have heart attacks. Yes, people are going to be the victims of intentional violence. Yes, people are going to be abused by other people. But teaching them the courage and morals to deal with that will be the best gift you ever give them, because then they can pass that on to the family of the victim or the victim themselves. After a few years of taking ambulance calls I may change my tune, but for right now I still strongly believe that everything happens for a reason. Even the horrific things. Think of all the victims that have a little more courage because of what Elizabeth Smart and Jaycee Dugard survived! Yes they survived something nobody should ever have to, but in doing so they’ve provided an example for others.

    We can’t change what happens, but we can choose how to deal with it. If we allow ourselves to let the bad things in life pull us down, we teach our children to be pulled down as well. If I teach my future children nothing else, it will be that we do have the power to make a change for the better, and it’s worth it even if it seems small.

  2. Natalie, great proactive thinking about how to handle tragedy rather than worrying about “what if.” That will be important to remember when you do have kids and can’t help but worry about them 24/7! 😉

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