Saturday, April 18, 2009

Reflections on a Saturday Jog

            It was a beautiful Spring afternoon yesterday so I took my baby out for a run. We’ve got this bright pink jogging stroller, and as I pass people they all smile as they watch the baby pass by cooing and “Blah-blah”ing. It’s interesting to me how more people acknowledge me now when I’m out in public with the baby. Maybe I seem more “safe” or something. Even young beautiful ladies, who formerly would make sure not to make eye contact for fear of inviting approach from random men, even they will smile at me and the baby. I’m safe now. I’m stuck with a kid. Can’t do anything majorly zonkers.
            So we zipped through residential streets and out to Trout Lake. By then she was fast asleep, so I kept going. I’ve gained so much weight having a baby. Seems like it’s so hard to find time to exercise or play soccer, and I feel like drinking beer more often. Ten pounds! Yes, I’m tall, so I hide it pretty well, but boy, do I ever feel it.
            It was a perfect day to take the baby out for a run. Padding along the quiet path, uphill to the residential streets where nobody seems to be around. Quiet. Peaceful. Celia would wake up occasionally when I hit a bump, but fall asleep again just as quickly. And I daydreamed. What will she be like? Will she be an athlete? Already I can tell she’ll have my body frame rather than Michelle’s, which in some ways is a pity, because I’m large-boned and Michelle definitely isn’t. We’re both tall, but for me I have two choices, either be athletic or overweight. So, I’ve chosen athletic. And I figure if Celia takes after me she’ll have to do the same. Or at least, make the same kind of choices. I kind of feel bad for her. Wish she could have taken after her mom in that way. It’s a lot of work for me, so I can just imagine what it’ll be like for a girl!
            I think of other things as well. I think of where we might be living by the time she’s a teenager. Still living in the big city, or will we move back closer to my parents? They’re getting older, and I want to be closer to them as that happens. I want to share our lives together. I want them to know their grandkids, and for the grandkids to know them.
            It’s interesting timing because at work the issue came up that they’d want to open a USA office, and they all looked at me because I’m a Dual-citizen, both Canadian and American. Plus, all my family is in the US. I don’t know, it seems like a big move, but perhaps the time is coming
sooner than I’d originally thought.
            I think about a lot of future stuff in regards to the baby. I wonder how things will be for her in this crazy genetically-modified world she’s growing up into. I wonder if she’ll have any of these new allergies that have popped up, most likely because of all the modifications we’ve made over the last few decades into what we eat, drink, and breathe. I want her to have a good life, and I have all these lurking fears that she won’t have the same kind of innocence that I experienced. I want to make the world a better place for her, but of course that’s impossible. I can only do so much. I can make her home a better place, and ensure she’s in a good community, but you just can’t control the world out there. All the evil people and corporations working to hurt people.
I feel very protective of this child. I want her to be prepared to face all of this, but to be sheltered enough to keep that smile on her face the rest of her life. I want her to be wise to the world, but innocent. And when I think of how much we need to educate our children now compared to thirty years ago, it’s overwhelming. The information age. We must protect them not just from physical people, but polluting thoughts and images on the internet, polluting food and drugs, polluting environments where people talk negatively and hurt one another. I hear neighbors screaming at their kids and think, “How can you do that? Those are just kids. Let them grow up to be healthy.” And then I see these kids as they’re now four and five-year-olds, and realize that they’ll blend in pretty well with the rest of the kids their age, but I know, and they know, that they are scarred. They are different. They’ve been yelled at. And out of nowhere they will lash out, I am sure, with all the anger that’s been bottled up inside. Maybe it will take them a lifetime to be healed. Maybe they’ll never be healed. And these people live next door. What a world we live in! I just pray that I can teach Celia to be able to protect herself from these people while at the same time accepting them and loving them. What a challenge!

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