What Would You Do?
5 most recent songs on my iTunes:
- Silver Springs– Fleetwood Mac
- Lonely Avenue– Ray Charles
- Summer Wind– Frank Sinatra
- I’ll Have To Say I Love You In A Song– Jim Croce
- The Rising– Bruce Springsteen
My children and I have ongoing discussions about life and all the different things that happen to us. About two thirds of those discussions involve their asking, “what would you do” followed by a description of a particular situation.
I love these conversations. They are filled with so much wonder, interest and excitement it is hard not to see these conversations as anything but the epitome of joy. That is not to say there aren’t serious conversations intermixed with the rest because there are plenty.
They have asked me what I would do if my parents died and how I would handle robbers/burglars. When they learned about 9/11 in school they wanted to know if I would fight the hijackers. In the midst of a serious talk my son made me laugh when he started quizzing me about what superhero I would be if I had the choice.
“Dad, what would you do if you could be a superhero and fight the hijackers. Would you want to be Batman or Wolverine? Don’t pick Superman because that is too easy, he would beat them all and carry the plane to safety. Don’t pick Green Lantern either because he would use the ring to fly the plane to safety.”
My daughter caught my attention because she stayed in the realm of the serious and said, “Don’t play games with them dad. Kill them or knock them out, but don’t give them any chances.”
The next 5 songs on iTunes:
- No one Lives Forever– Oingo Boingo
- Centerfold– J. Geils Band
- Secret World– Peter Gabriel
- What’s The Matter Here– 10,000 Maniacs
- Fire– Jimi Hendrix
One of the challenges of private school is that your children sometimes become friends with the children of the ridiculously wealthy and affluent.Â Money isn’t an indicator of whether someone is going to be good or bad. I have known jerks who were well heeled and jerks that didn’t have a dime to their name.
What I am referring to here is the comparisons that your children will make between what they have and what their friends have. For example my daughter went to a birthday party at a house that is best described as a compound.
It is like a country club there. It is beautiful and has the kind of kitchen that any chef would want. That sucker is massive but completely functional.
Anyhoo, when my daughter came home she asked me why we didn’t have an elevator in our home, an intercom. basketball court and a gym. I told her to ask her grandfather what happened to the empire he was supposed to give to me. She made a face and told me that I didn’t make any sense.
Later on she asked me why we don’t go on trips to places like Hawaii, Europe, Costa Rica and Israel. I laughed and said “because you go to school.” That earned another comment about how I don’t make any sense.
That night I sat her and her brother down and had a conversation about why we shouldn’t compare what we have to what our friends have. I told them that if you spend your days comparing yourself to others you will find it becomes hard to be happy.Â I also explained that Tommy’s father is a surgeon and his mother is an Endocrinologist and that meant they earned a lot more money than I do.
My son looked at me and told me he had another question. “Dad, if you could go back to school, what would you do? Would you become a doctor?”
I told them that if I could do it all over again I would make some different choices but that becoming a doctor wasn’t one of them. “It is nice to have money but it is not really what makes you happy.”
Things That Matter
One day these rug rats of mine will read this blog. When they do they are going to find out that I use this place to vent. They’ll see that sometimes I pour all of my frustration into this place, but what they won’t read/see is how much better I felt afterwards. So periodically I put little notes in here to remind them that this is cheap therapy.
This is where I come to help focus on the things that matter. When they say what would you do I can say that some of the answers I came up with came from blogging.
And one day when my son is older he can read about how I probably would choose to be Wolverine. Hijack my plane and I am going to poke you full of holes with some very nasty Adamantium claws.
Got to run, my bed is calling my name and now you know what I would do in this particular situation. Night folks, see you all in the AM.