Now, I did things to prepare myself for this career I would never have, that my parents never knew about. I set up jumps in the alley behind our house and jumped over cans and whatever other dangerous stuff I could find. I purposely fell out of the tree in our front yard...on my back, so I could get used to getting the wind knocked out of me. I know what you're thinking; I must have gotten an early head injury because of all the risks I took at such an early age.
But, my parents supported me in some of my risks, as well. We lived on a hill when I was in fourth grade. The house was on stilts, so the windows on one side of the house were in essence two stories off the ground. They would let me jump from this story window to the ground below.
My dad had a broken-down Mustang in the front yard, and he'd let me ride my bike at it full speed, slam on the brakes, turn into it, roll onto the hood and windshield. I had to practice getting hit by a car if I were to survive as a Hollywood stunt man.
Today, if a child were allowed to do take these types of risks, Child Protective Services with be all over the parents, calling them neglectful and endangering thier children.
So glad I grew up in the 70's and 80's when parents werew allowed to let their kids take risks. Sure, I could have broken a leg or got stitches, but it would have been a learning experience. I'm glad I never had to be rushed to the ER for the risks I took, but I'm so pleased I got the chance to take them.
If my daughters wanted to jump out of a two-story window or crash their bike into a broken-down car, I would stop them. I know! Shouldn't I know better? Yes, I should, but the world has changed and parenting expectations have morphed as well.
But, I do have to remember to remind myself to let my girls take other risks, so long as they will remain relatively safe. Without the risks, I wouldn't be the person I am today. And, I want my girls to have that opportunity as well...to some degree.
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