I have definite feelings about guns in my house. Not only the real ones, but the little kid play kind. I have never liked guns (although I do have an isolated happy memory of shooting a rifle with my grandpa). The Columbine High School shootings canvased the news while I was pregnant with Djeryd. I remember sitting in my living room watching the horror unfold while holding my little belly wondering what kind of world I was bringing this child into. On top of that, when I was a teenager a friend of mine experienced a tragic accident involving a gun kept in the home.
I vowed then and there to never let a gun, or anything like unto it, into my home. We did really good until last week. Water pistols have reared their bright orange plastic heads around here from time to time, but I throw them away as soon as I can. Last week my kids brought home toy guns from Grandma's house (I'm not mad at you Mom, don't worry). I was stunned. And shocked. My kids chose to buy little toy guns?? Even when they knew they would probably be confiscated the moment I saw them? Sure they make guns out of Legos (and cardboard, and sticks, and scraps of wood, and . . .) from time to time, but this was different. Anyway, it made me stop and think.
Have I been just a little overboard with this whole gun thing? I mean I remember playing cops and robbers when I was a kid. I think we always used our fingers for guns, but still. When I see my kids playing cop games shivers run down my spine as I imagine them thinking a life of crime (or crime fighting) is somehow glamorous. My imagination runs wild and I get scared that they will develop a fascination with weapons, with violence.
But when I pause for a moment I realize, because we don't have a TV and we are extremely selective about what films our children watch, that my children are not even exposed to violence, much less inundated with it. They show no more propensity towards shoot 'em up stuff than kids who played cowboys and Indians in the 50's. I believe the play is innocent, and kids being kids (yes, my sweet little Annabelle even wields a Lego gun from time to time - sigh) will play good vs. evil games - especially boys. My mom is always telling me that boys are born to protect. It is simply (and beautifully) part of their nature. They play at it as boys to learn how to use that instinct wisely as men.
So, for the time being, I have decided to let the guns stay. I have absolutely NO intention of ever buying one, but I'm choosing to ride this one out and see what happens. After all, I can't control everything, and I'm learning I really don't want to.
4 weeks ago