Okay, so my boys are learning to drive.
Actually, we’ve been at it a while now. But yesterday, while one of them was driving and I was sitting in the passenger seat, I thought for the first time “Geesh, why do I have to live in this time period where it is dangerous to even let them leave the house alone?”
Then, I heard a voice in the car, and no, it was not from the kid in the backseat – “life has always been dangerous. Two hundred and seventy years ago you would have been sending them off to do militia duty, probably in a blockhouse, with who knew how many Indians in the forest around them. Would that be any better?”
Admittedly, no it would not.
I guess all we can hope for as parents is to teach them to take care of themselves, wait for the brain cells on boys to develop enough they eventually operate with at least a small bit of common sense, and to pray the Lord keeps them safe.
When Breaking Promises opens, David Cayle has done a tour of militia duty, serving under General Forbes in his quest to wrest control of present-day Pittsburgh from the French. Amon Cayle, his father, as you can imagine, was not happy with his son's decision.
David stepped past the barns into the wickedly hot sunshine. He needed to think of some way to convince his Pa it was best to wait. A whole summer of the man’s aloof behavior, because he was forced to stay home, was not what David wanted. He had been trying hard to make amends for going into the militia, not only to his Pa, but to Mary for all the scandal he had caused in the meeting. He did not want to now undo all the trust he had regained with them.
David had his reasons for joining, but you’ll have to wait for Breaking Promises to find out what they are. Needless to say though, despite the hardships of the campaign and Amon’s dissatisfaction with his son’s decision, the experience grows David up in a number of ways. This is often the case when young people take on adult responsibilities, and it is an area the American culture sorely lacks. Too often we prolong adolescence with children, keeping them from taking those responsibilities on and encouraging them, instead, to have fun and find themselves, oftentimes even into their college years. (I will not go off on my tangent about how useless middle school is and how wasted those years are.)
So my boys are headed for their driver licenses mid-April. I will have no choice but to finally allow them to do so. After all, they are a little big for a baby bed at this point, and they can pick a lock faster than I can. (You DO learn to do a lot when you are the mother of boys.)
Dodging cars or dodging arrows? I do not see a great deal of difference.
And for parents, so much changes, and so much stays the same.