Friday, March 23, 2012

The Paul Harvey "Rest of the Story"

You know, ever since my story "broke" last week I have been just stunned at the information that has just literally slammed into me. The drinking incident with my son from that Friday night was not over. Not the discussion part anyway. It seems, my posted story sent all kinds of folks into a tailspin. Adults and children alike. My son doesn't have a Face Book account anymore, his choice, so he didn't know. I have no idea how many people contacted my son, but I know they did. He was not very happy about my story. He told me that quite frankly, he thought that was a family matter. He didn't understand me writing it, or posting it, for everyone to see.

That following Sunday night, after the Friday  fishing trip, when he told me he didn't understand me posting that story, a lot more information came to light. Not about anyone else, just himself. I was stunned at the amount he admitted to drinking, and that it had happened almost every time I had allowed him to camp out at the Mine Hole. I had no more anger in me. I sat there and cried silent tears. I was scared to death. For the first time in a long time, I felt as if I had lost complete control of a situation. He is able to make day trips to the Mine Hole, but there will be no more overnight camping trips for quite awhile, if ever.

This is the way I see it. It was no longer a family matter once 15 boys, give or take the ones who did not participate, spent the night at that Mine Hole on more than one occasion and got drunk and stoned all night long. Once those boys thought it was cool to tell everybody and their brother, what they were doing, it was no longer a family matter. By texting your friends while it was happening, running your mouth in school the next week, and bragging to all your other friends, who told their friends, who told their friends. You all broke up your own party. Not me.

Maybe they were all worried I was going to "rat" them out. Nope. Not my job. My job is to raise my son. With the information I "leaked" and posted, I had hope more parents would make themselves aware. I have no idea if that has happened. If some of the parents didn't like my comments about enabling, I don't care. If people didn't like my comments about the church raising your child, again, I could care less. That's not the churches job. It's ours. In a weeks time, I have heard so many things about so many children and adults, I just as soon you didn't invite us to your churches anymore. They must be preaching things different from what I was raised to believe in and I don't care to be a part of any of that. I'm not sure which handbook I received for my parental duties, but mine feels right. I'd check the copyrights on some of those you have been reading.

I am not ashamed to tell any kid who gets in a vehicle that is insured under our names, that there will be no alcohol allowed in their bodies while they are in my vehicles. Whatever they are doing elsewhere in other places, other vehicles, I cannot control. Nor do I intend to try. If you don't want your child to hear that small speech from me, then he doesn't need to ride in a vehicle with my child.

My son told me he knew he was out of control and going down the wrong path. His Daddy said I needed to buy a breathalyzer. My son admitted, that if that was what would give us peace of mind, he deserved it. He caused it. He broke our trust, he knew he would have to earn it back. I haven't bought one. Simply because I believe in him that much.

I'm not a holy roller by any stretch of the imagination. Lord knows I have had my due and made my own mistakes. Drank too much and paid for it the next day. But I was OLD ENOUGH to make those decisions. I was of legal age to make those decisions. These kids are not. And I believe in a firm line of right and wrong.  All of these kids are good kids. I know this with all my heart. But they need good solid guidance. They need us to be firm. Be parents, not friends. Not right now. That will come later, when they are grown, and on their own, earning a good living, with family's of their own. Because we helped them to get there. Alive. 

And lastly, I'm not here to "clean up" Gadsden County. I'm not running for office. I'm not applying for position of Minister anywhere anytime soon. I don't qualify for any of the above. I'm too mouthy, my thoughts and opinions too radical at times, and my language needs a lot of cleaning up. I just want to spend the rest of my life watching my children become good adults. And they have to be here on earth for that to happen. I do not intend to bury a child of my own. Nor do I want to stand and watch you bury yours. And certainly not for anything I should have been able to prevent.  You know, everyone always says, if you ever hear something about my child, I want to know. The past weeks' events have really left me wondering, if that were ever really true. And that, makes me very sad.


  1. "It takes a village..." "Ignorance is bliss..." Many sayings apply here, but what you say here is true. We as adults are responsible for our children in every way until they are adults. If we are raising them irresponsibly, what kind of adults will they be? Are we setting them up for success or failure? And where did the notion of being friends with our children come from? We are parents, guardians, nurturers, security officers, financers and a whole lot of other things first. My friends are grown. My kids are not. Parents acting like teenagers and teenagers acting like adults just doesn't work for me. Your son has a lot of respect for you to react the way he did when confronted. I see less mature peers pitching fits because they got caught. Keep doing what you are doing...

  2. I like to read your blogs because they are usually funny, true and always heartfelt. Even though I just got to know you, although you are my sister’s friend and have lived across from where I grew up for many years now, I felt a connection. I want you to know I totally agree with you on this one. It’s our job to be our children’s advocate to guide them through his/her young life, which doesn’t always mean we will be their favorite person. My daughter will be 13 in a week, and she and I have had many talks about things such as this and more. Letting peer pressure talk you into making bad choices or out n out making bad decisions on her own is inevitable, I’m not fooling myself. I hope that I will be as strong and as diligent as you. As far as the goody goody people that think that you have spilled their beans unjustly or untimely, they need some self evaluation in their own home. Small town life is great until someone gets righteous enough to set the village on fire. Just don’t let them burn down your teepee, you’re job as chief is not done.