I never cut my kids grapes, or hot dogs. I figured if they survived the orphanage, the could survive snack time. I let them use sharp knives and thought them to cut up all the veggies for dinner. One is a competitive diver and hurls herself of high cement platforms. I made them learn to get on the chairlift without adults as soon as they were tall enough, 7 and 5 respectively. I then forced them to go skiing alone for an hour at a time, with no parents. In general, I have always been pretty chill about everything. Fear was not really a thing for me.
Since J died, I am terrified of everything. I got scared going sledding with a friend and her kids, convinced I would break my arm. The other night at a friend’s basketball game, I was terrified they were going to fall over the railing and onto the court below. I could just see it over and over in my head, splattered on the floor below with a broken neck.
My risk threshold is so low now, it won’t be long I force them to wear helmets around the house. Actually, I am less scared for them, but really scared for me. I don’t want anything to happen to me. So it took every ounce of my mental energy to take them skiing this weekend. I drove in the right lane at the actual speed limit all the way to the ski hill yesterday – it has never taken me so long to get there!
We are all excellent skiers. I’m not bragging – I come from a ski-school-owning family and both of them were excellent skiers before they started kindergarden. And yet, the fear was overwhelming. We made it, no one broke anything, but man, I was exhausted from being so scared.
And maybe, just maybe, I cut the grapes in half…