I have three boys. Three boys who love to wrestle, draw, dance, game, and shoot. Not in that order and not everyday. But often enough for me to have to pull them apart. Yell for people to stop jumping off and onto the couch, turn off that game system....and for the love of god stop making gun noises.
I often have to check myself and evaluate what is just a bunch of boys having fun and what is a teachable moment. Which things should I let ride and what behaviors should I I discuss with them.
I gotta say. This gun thing is driving me mad. The pretend shooting. The interest in all things camouflage. The designation of good guys and bad guys.
And for my three sons, I know this play is just not that deep. For them its all fun. But for me....
Well, I wrestle with knowing there are rarely absolute "bad" guys and "good" guys. That often the people deemed "good" are the ones who have won the war and got to write the history books.
I wrestle with letting "boys be boys" and wanting to explain to them that people with guns can irreparably hurt one another. More than any fists, speeches, or wrestling matches ever could. People with guns can take out entire populations. People with guns can shoot first and ask questions later.
And that people with guns....I just don't want them to be the people with guns who hurt other people.
When I've asked my oldest what he would even need a gun for he says, "Protection." But how safe would a gun real or imagined really keep my boys?
It's one of those things I have no clear answers on. Just millions of questions.
So I say to the universe...
"Please keep my sons safe from people with guns. Let my sons be keepers of peace. Not of war."