Monday, July 27, 2009

Forget abstinence...

Nancy Reagan made "Just say no" to drugs sound easy, but a whole generation of kids proved it was a lot harder than that.
In my fair state, they like to take the same approach to sex and the twin problems of sexually transmitted diseases and teen pregnancy. Abstinence education -- just say no -- is the core of the effort to deal with the raging hormones and poor judgment that are so much a part of adolescence.
And guess what? It doesn't seem to work as a deterrent for sexual activity any more than it did for experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Go figure.
I've given the issue a lot of thought. And by that, I mean A HELL OF A LOT OF THOUGHT because my two girls, now 11 and 12, mean everything to me and I want them to have their very best shot at an education and a childhood and .,.. well, you know what I'm saying. I don't want them to sabotage themselves.
I have listened to experts, read the books and yet, my moment of epiphany came in a most unexpected moment. I was sitting in the grade school library, helping ring up sales at a book fair, when it hit me.

Tell them about PTA. If you get pregnant, you will have children. Who will go to school. And you will be expected to participate in PTA. Tell them in detail. About the meetings. And the projects. And fundraisers.

If that doesn't scare them into behaving, they're already lost.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

It really is peaceful

We've been dividing our time this summer in an almost bipolar fashion.
On one hand is the frenetic, almost-panicked efforts to get Beaux reconnected with his tribe so he can access the anti-rejection medications that a change in our insurance put out of reach.
I've learned to write legal petitions and whimper and take nothing at face value. For instance, two days ago we were told Beaux is not Yaqui, according to their records. I asked a simple question and now no one's so sure. We need more information to figure it out. Next up for us is a quest to get the original, before-the-adoption-created-a-rewrite version of his birth certificate.
We're also frantically trying to keep up at work, an extension of the adoption/tribe/medical stuff.
The really good stuff is happening on the side, when we move slowly, more wandering than anything. At least a couple of times a week, we go looking for a spectacular sunset or a photo or flowers or a piece of nature.
This past week, we discovered what may turn out to be my favorite place ever. And it is, oddly and ironically enough, a cemetery.
Mt. Olivet, up by the University of Utah campus, is one of the loveliest places I've ever been. And I'm not the only one that thinks so.
A small herd of deer have moved in. So have a few rabbits, some ducklings and I can't begin to count how many birds.
Twice this weekend, we wandered over there to meander in the shade and read the headstones and -- the main event -- take photos of fawns who are wandering around.
Their ears are so big they look like kangaroos and their legs are so skinny and wobbly they seem like stilts. And I'm enamored with all of them.
I don't believe I'm going to care where my corporeal remains wind up after I'm gone. I'm not going to need them or hang around them. But if I believed that my body was going to roam near where it was buried, I'd vote for Mount Olivet. My body's pretty happy there while I'm alive, too.

Friday, July 3, 2009

God's foot and other wonders

I've been watching the skies a lot lately because they've become really colorful and funky, no doubt because of the wild little thunderstorms we've had every day or so.
Two days ago, I saw a cloud formation I'm calling "God's Foot."
Unfortunately, I was on my way to pick up Beaux at the time and didn't have a camera with me, so I called Alyson and asked her to run outside and look south. "You'll see what looks like a gigantic foot coming out of the clouds," I told her. "Take a picture. No one's going to believe me without proof."
She called me back a few minutes later with sad news. By the time she grabbed the camera and ran outdoors, then searched the sky (trying to remember which way is south), "the toes have separated from the foot, Mama. Now it's mostly just a mess, though I can see how it might have been."
This morning, when Beaux and I left for work before 6 a.m., we were stunned by a rainbow perfectly framed down the end of our street, a ribbon of color that hung suspended in the sky, unattached to anything. It was just a piece of joy, hanging there. I ran into the house and grabbed the camera and did catch that one.
What a lovely way to start the day. And it stayed in front of us all the way to work.
Beaux's getting sicker now, but rather than dwell on that, we're finding joy in odd places. Like a piece of eye candy in the sky.
If you click the second picture, you'll find there's a bird flying across it, as well.