Dana lives in Seattle, and Tracie lives in Germany. We are businesswomen, writers and humorists. We write about life, dating, and today's modern women.
It is said parents take too much credit or too much blame. When my siblings and I were kids and excelled, my father would beam with pride and point his thumb at his chest, exclaiming, “Gerald Frank’s genes!” When we acted out, he’d shake his head in disdain, “That’s from your mama’s side.”
Last week, my daughter completed her junior year Kairos Retreat. Four days camping with her classmates, no cell phones, let me repeat this NO CELL PHONES, and no communication with family or close friends, this 96 hours was set aside to reflect, focus, and re-start.
When my daughter returned, I eagerly awaited the sharing of her Palancas Letters which were sent by those closest to her. I liken Palancas as Parental Guns as these letters are a resource to be kept for life. In my letter, which I was unaware certain sections would be shared to the group, Taryn was mortified by my blunt expressions which is how we communicate daily. I focused on the reDAMNdiculous cycles in life of friendships, work, love and life. I shared how proud I am of the woman she has morphed into, especially as we approach the one year untimely passing of her father. We sobbed as her brother shared in his letter that he could never fill their dad’s shoes, but he would be there to walk her down the isle when her big day arrives. Yes, my children are amazing- too much credit… actually I credit my mom who has been instrumental in parenting my children as her own.
As we talked about protecting oneself, we always use the term 6 o’clock to watch your back. Protect your teeth- floss everyday, all teeth, especially the ones you want to keep! Protect your health, work out, eat healthy and don’t get STD’s! Protect your future- work hard, save and don’t be frivolous! Protect your soul- Give with abundance! Protect your heart- Love without abandon! I have tried to instill all important values, as they will pick out my nursing home!
But what I was not able to comprehend or express was how to protect oneself in a situation like the Florida High School shooting last week. There are no Parental Guns to protect from this madness. As I read the stories of each of the 17 children who perished, my thoughts went to the soccer games, and ballet recitals of their childhood. To the girl scout meetings, and school dances. To laughter over movies or a great book. To jokes, this week after watching Black Panther, my children and I are convinced we are from the Wakanda Tribe. To trips and holidays and the daily grind – meatloaf again?ugh. To the graduation and maturation that the parents of the deceased will not be able to embrace.
And so … We pray. We pray for the lives snubbed out too soon. We pray for the parents suffering.
And we pray that all of you reading will Pull out your Parental Guns… You only get one shot, so protect your child every day in every way that you can.