I’m taking the tween on a trip. Off we go to somewhere special.
It’s a city that’s part of our past. Or mine, anyway.
Boston was our home long before the tween was even a thought. With one baby, we were free and mobile. The world was wide. So we relocated to somewhere we had never been to start making memories. Somewhere unknown.
Although he’s never been there, Boston is the stuff of legend for the tween. It’s the place where his brother learned to walk and talk, the place his sister was born. It’s where his pregnant mom bused to Harvard University, excited by weekly writing classes and where his dad spent nights moonlighting. Boston was a chapter in the life of our family – the one before he appeared.
This year, I wanted to introduce the tween to the infamous city in person. I booked flights and chose a sparkly hotel smack in the center of the skyline then planned what we could cram into three days. Together, we would close the gap, complete the circle.
In fact, we have been getting through this cold Spring lit with the idea of us walking the winding streets, standing in the stadiums. And now we are just weeks away. All we have to do is fly into the Hub, Beantown, the Cradle of Modern America, and the adventure begins.
Then a bomb went off. And the tween said: “Mom, maybe we shouldn’t go to Boston.”
Of course I thought it, too. We parents are danger-avoidant. The safe move is to lend our thoughts and prayers to those under attack – whether that’s in NYC, Israel, Boston or anywhere else – while staying snug in our cocoon.
Unfortunately, risk is everywhere. It’s there when the kid walks down the street, when he plays hockey, when he rides in my car. The scary truth is that we risk our safety every time we open the door and leave the house.
I teach the kids to take precautions in the marathon that is life, but while I don’t say it, I know there is no safe place, no guarantee that any of us will reach the finish line.
So as long as the airports are open, we are buckling up and heading back to the city we love.
I applaud the courage it took for those runners to get up, get outside and go, even if they could not know where they would end. The joy is in getting off the sidelines. That’s all we really have.