Shh…Cross Your Fingers…No Mass Shootings in the Past Few Days: Revisiting Original Intent and the Second Amendment

Since we seem to be in a lull—for how long, who knows—in mass shootings, I thought it might be a good time to revisit the Second Amendment, original intent, and the reality of risk through a complete and thorough analysis of the genesis of a “well-regulated militia….” and the level of criminality we face as a society, absent the hysteria of a post-shooting news frenzy.

(Authors note, it may be that we are not in a lull but just the latest shootings haven’t merited any news time because, meh, it wasn’t really that many victims.)

Here are those twenty-seven words that have wreaked such havoc on holding a civil discussion in seeking rational solutions to preventing gun violence in the United States.

Patrick Henry, “Give me Liberty or give me Death.”

“A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

Clearly, something is amiss here. 50.6% of all firearm deaths occurred in six countries.

Brazil, the United States, Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia, and Guatemala.

Now, not to be condescending to those other five countries, but I can’t help but think most Americans would find it hard to believe we bear a similarity to countries with major internal stability issues. Even more startling, we have a lower firearms death rate (excluding deaths from armed conflicts) than Afghanistan.

Ask anybody on the Southside of Chicago. I bet some might think they live in a war zone because of firearm violence.

There are two issues I want to address:  The genesis of the need, in the eyes of the original authors of the Bill of Rights, for citizens to have firearms and the perception of those who believe the risk of owning a gun (most firearm deaths are suicides) is outweighed by the actual threat to their safety thus the need to carry a concealed firearm in public.

The Supreme Court will hear arguments on a New York case this Fall about two New York residents who were denied permits to carry concealed weapons. The ramifications of such a decision will have implications nationwide.

But first, to the issue of the origin of the Second Amendment. Context is important. The colonists, recently freed of the shackles of a Monarchy, distrusted central governments and standing armies. Having just defeated one at great peril, they feared replacing the monarchy with merely another repressive regime protected by a powerful military. Relying on the success of a ragtag group of volunteers—aided by some able French officers and supplies—the Americans saw no need for a standing army. Should the need arise for a defense of the country, or individual state, the same approach would suffice.

Thus it made sense for citizens, subject to recall as a militia, to be allowed to keep arms. But, as with all things historical, there was more to the story.

The south, already aware of the growing anti-slavery movement, was mainly concerned with a standing army that might be loosed upon them should the anti-slavery movement gain a majority in Congress and the Presidency.

None other than Patrick Henry himself—the epitome of the patriotic American—raised the genuine issue of why citizens, particularly those in the south, needed weapons to protect themselves from not just an overreaching government but from something infinitely more sinister.

In its initial form, the amendment about weapons spoke about Congress being the only entity that could activate the militia in time of war. But what if, Henry argued, some other calamities arose not from outside a state but from within? Leaving Congress the sole power would put states at risk.

He argued.

“Not domestic insurrections, but war. If the country be invaded, a state may go to war, but cannot suppress insurrections. If there should happen an insurrection of slaves, the country cannot be said to be invaded. They cannot, therefore, suppress it without the interposition of Congress… Congress, and Congress only, can call forth the militia.”

Patrick Henry https://press-pubs.uchicago.edu/founders/documents/a4_4s9.html

There you have it. One of the original arguments supporting the changed language, made to mitigate southern states’ concerns, was to ensure white citizens could have the means to suppress the insurrection of slaves. And if there is any doubt this right was reserved to white citizens, read the entire reference above. Not one mention of free blacks being allowed to “keep and bear arms.”

It was not the only reason, but it was a reason they crafted the language the way they did.

Don’t take my word for it. Read this excellent piece by Professor Carl Bogus from Roger Williams Law School written back in 1998.

Here’s the link to download the paper. It is lengthy, but we are discussing a rather serious topic. I think it merits at least as much time as an episode of America’s Got Talent. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1465114

Threat Perception vs. Threat Reality

People buy guns for three specific reasons: hunting, target shooting, personal protection. While the first two have some associated risks, so does riding a bike or driving in a car. It is with the last reason that the issue of perception vs. reality bears discussion.

In many states, “stand your ground” laws, designed to allow individuals the lawful right to defend themselves rather than flee from a threat, may have unintended consequences of increasing the likelihood of a violent encounter involving a firearm.

This is from a summary of studies on the effect of such laws.

“The prevalence of guns in the community means incidents like robbery and other crimes are more likely to carry the risk of gun violence. In states with “stand your ground” laws, Rand Corporation found that even minor disagreements or physical altercations carried a greater risk of turning into violent crime. In short, gun ownership does not increase safety, and the prevalence of guns directly correlates with significantly greater risk of gun-related homicides and suicides.” https://www.safewise.com/resources/guns-at-home/

When I was in the police academy, one of the instructors said something that always stuck with me. He said, “every call you go on involves a gun. Most of the time, you’re the only one with the gun, but nevertheless there is a gun in the mix.”

From that, I also knew this, guns have no loyalty; they will work for whoever pulls the trigger.

Thus it makes sense—given the increasing number of people seeking permits to carry guns, combined with the number of states which have no limitation or permit requirement to carry a concealed weapon—the number of violent encounters involving firearms will increase.

What once may have been a threatening argument, pushing and shoving match, or street brawl, now turns into a free-fire zone.

I can’t help but believe that many of those who see carrying a concealed weapon as a valid measure of protection subconsciously want something to happen. If for no other reason than to justify their choice.

Here’s a link to an analysis of multiple studies of stand your ground laws. In every instance, under every study, the prevalence of such laws increased the likelihood of a firearms death or injury, and not always for the “bad” guy.

https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/stand-your-ground/violent-crime.html

Sometimes the perception of a threat far outweighs the reality. While violent crime has declined over the past several decades, the perception of violent crime has increased. We can attribute much of this to the non-stop saturation of media coverage—both traditional and social—and the limited in-depth analysis of crime and actual risk.

Given we put so much emphasis on the “founding fathers” words—such devotion to the past borders on religiosity, it is like our national religion—we must be zealous in our pursuit of understanding them in the context of their times.

And our equally religious faith in the sanctity of the Second Amendment bears a thorough and dispassionate analysis to measure its benefit compared to the risk.

One cannot choose which facts of history to accept and which ones to ignore. The link between the “right to bear arms” and protecting white slave owners from a slave insurrection cannot be severed. It is a fundamental part of the overall analysis.

We also cannot ignore the actual level of criminality and the threat to personal safety simply because we may perceive that threat to be greater than its actuality. Just because we are fearful something could happen doesn’t make it more likely, or real.

What we do need is to dispassionately examine the risk/benefit of carrying concealed weapons. Before we march blindly into a practice we believe will make us safer—under the guise of defending our inalienable right to bear arms—but may put us and society at greater risk, we should be as confident as possible we are forging a sound doctrine.

It may be every law-abiding citizen carrying guns would make us safer, or it may be a self-fulfilling prophecy that all those guns will kill us.

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

As We Descend toward Winter…

Today, June 20, 2021, at 11:31 PM, we will begin the long descent into winter by reaching the summer solstice. The longest day—actually the longest period of sunlight—will end, and the days will grow shorter.

While this extended period of sunlight and our position riding on this earth in the northern hemisphere will bring us warmer, sometimes scorching days of summer heat, the inevitable progression of the earth’s axis tilting away from the sun will drive us inexorably toward winter darkness.

For those of us in New England, our weather within each season is as variable as it is throughout the year. The first hints of Fall coolness are often interspersed with almost summer-like warmth. Still, they inevitably yield to frosty nights, cold-desiccated gardens, and falling leaves—a sort of technicolor version of a snowstorm.

The progression toward howling blizzards, bone-chilling wind, and the palette of summer color replaced by the white- gray hazy shade of winter soon dominates the scene outside our windows.

Sitting outside, fishing in a stream, walking on a beach, or hiking a mountain path bathed in the summer’s warmth are such pleasurable, if fleeting, moments. It would serve us well to embrace them.

Seasons change with the scenery;
Weaving time in a tapestry.
Won’t you stop and remember me
Look around,
Leaves are brown,
And the sky is a hazy shade of winter.

Hazy Shade of Winter, Paul Simon

The progression of the sun through the seasons has always fascinated me, even as a young boy. In winter, I always noticed the sun would be far to the left of a large tree in the woods behind my house. Magically it would seem to the six-year-old me, I would see it move first behind the tree, as winter faded and spring arrived, then appear again to the right of the tree, marking the start of summer.

Through the fortunes of birth and my growing up in Cumberland, RI, the window of my room always caught the first rays of the summer solstice and the last rays of the autumn equinox—when the day and night were of equal length.

In the summer, the sun’s rays would wake me in the morning, inviting me to another day of freedom. As summer faded, the sun would disappear from the window, first hidden behind the tree through the first days of autumn, then move, so I had to look out the window to see it.

While the two solstices and equinoxes mark the passing of time—each event deducting from whatever allocation we might have—they are also comforting. I may complain about the winter, yet truth be told, I think I would miss never seeing it again. While living in a winter-free part of the world has its attractions, I sometimes enjoy sitting in a warm house looking out on a blustery New England winter storm. Knowing, even if I cannot see it, the sun is working its way back toward summer while I look forward to seeing it.

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

Back in the High Life Again

Time to put the nightmare of the past year behind us. Time to take back our lives and there is no better way than to venture out to a book signing!

Stop by, grab a drink, pickup a book signed by Jerry and I (bring it along if you’ve already have it and we will sign it!)

Friday June 25th
3:00-5:00 p.m. & 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.  
Havana Cigar Bar and Lounge
24 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI

It’s time to get out there again!

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

A (Garbled) Message from the Stars

Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity.  And I’m not so sure about the universe. 

Albert Einstein

Twenty-nine percent of Americans believe in Astrology which is close to the number who also believe in Creationism (Forty percent). All of which may explain quite a bit of the current conditions in the country.

That people believe in a Pseudo-science (astrology) and ignore the overwhelming evidence of Evolution to embrace Creationism underscores the growing anti-intellectual phenomenon plaquing the US.

I find the astrology aspect particularly amusing. Here’s a sample of astrological prognostications for my “sign” Leo for June 16, 2021.  These are just a few of the thousands of sites that offer such pabulum. Some put “for entertainment purposes only”  as a disclaimer, but they don’t really mean it as demonstrated by the mini font.

“Withdrawing into your burrow isn’t always easy for a fire sign like yourself. But, you’re heavily meditated and thriving in your own company. This is what having your third eye lit looks and feels like, Leo! On your cards today: looking at the stars and exploring the mysteries of what lies beyond. If there is a teacher, guru or practitioner you connect with deeply, now is the time to imbibe their teachings in a way that feels authentic to you.”

https://www.vogue.in/horoscope/collection/daily-horoscope-today-16-06-2021-zodiac-signs/

“Leo sign people are likely to strengthen their relationship with their boss. Situations will improve further in the workplace. A wish may get fulfilled today. Those who are working in the government sector will get even better results today. Your familial life will remain good. Your health will remain fine. You are likely to make monetary gains.” 

https://www.pinkvilla.com/lifestyle/people/horoscope-today-june-16-2021-check-your-daily-astrology-prediction-zodiac-sign-leo-libra-scorpio-777614

“You are blessed by the moon. Happiness may be around you, it can help you to enjoy your day to day work. Your vital power may help you to take tough decisions, which will increase your profits in the near future.”

https://www.timesnownews.com/astrology/article/horoscope-today-june-16-2021-taurus-leo-virgo-check-out-daily-astrology-prediction-for-all-zodiac-signs/771186

“The moon in Virgo activates the financial sector of your chart today, encouraging you to get your budget organized and think about how to create more abundance and security in your life. You’re ready to make exciting changes in your career as the moon mingles with Uranus!

https://www.vice.com/en/article/bvzvq8/daily-horoscope-june-16-2021

So, ignoring for the moment the complexities of planetary mechanics, the phenomenon of the procession of the equinoxes (a 26000-year orbit of the earth’s axis, altering the relative position of the earth/sun alignment and thus placing the Sun during the Spring equinox this year in the “House of Pisces” when in the year 4600 BCE the Sun was in Capricorn,) and the realities of the continuous and accelerating expansion of the universe, what possesses people to embrace such nonsense?

Such complexities matter little when people want to believe something despite all the evidence to the contrary—things like vaccines causing autism, another well debunked fallacy.

I cannot decide which of these horoscopes to embrace, and I worry about the last one from Vice.com.  I am fairly certain having the moon mingling with Uranus might be an unpleasant experience and is likely still illegal in a few states.

Besides, my psychic advisor told me I should ignore such things while my aura was in a weakened state.

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

Reality Check

As many of you know, I wrote a book called Unmade: Honor Loyalty Redemption that has now been be made into a soon-to-be-released movie. (Movie Trailer)

The story about Bobby Walason’s early life is one of the saddest I had ever heard.

As I wrote in the book,

This story casts a light onto the ebb and flow of a dark side of American society, a look at the forces that play havoc with lives that go adrift on the streets of all our cities.

Joe Broadmeadow, UnMade: Honor Loyalty Redemption

But such stories, it turns out, are all too common in our country. Most of those kids never survived the streets. Yet, it turns out, a few did.

I encourage you to click the link below and read the blog by Craig Desorcy. His story, his experiences, and how he, though sheer determination, found a way not only to survive but to thrive is inspirational. He chose to follow a different path, not surrender to his circumstances, and uses his experiences to help others.

Please read and share his blog with others.

Click here to read the blog piece.

Click here to read the blog piece

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

Spending a Day

Yesterday, my wife and I took a day off from our usual activities to travel to New Shoreham, RI, aka Block Island. When we planned the trip, I am sorry to confess, it occurred to me, a native Rhode Islander, that I had never been to Block Island. At least, not that I could recall.

I’d been on fishing charters near the island but have no recollection of actually setting foot on the island. For those of you who only know Rhode Island as the smallest state in the union, considering that over the (almost) 65 years of life, traveling all over the world, I never ventured the 13 miles off the coast to visit Block Island, might seem odd.

It is not. It is a Rhode Island thing.

For those of us born here, we consider any trip of more than 10 miles an expedition that may involve suitcases, maps, and bag lunches,

But that’s not the point of this piece.

If one really thinks about it, you cannot kill time, time is killing us.

Author

On the way back on the ferry I said, “That was a nice way to spend the day.”

And it was, but the expression, “spend the day,” caught my imagination. Every day we are alive we are “spending the day.” In most cases it is more expending the day; caught up as we are in the daily habits and responsibilities of life, but we are nevertheless deducting one more day from our very finite total.

This led me to the expression, killing time. If one really thinks about it, you cannot kill time, time is killing us. Each passing moment brings one nearer and nearer to the last second.

Despite the pleasant music and lyrics of the Rolling Stones song Time is On Our Side, it is not. Time may be, as Einstein said, “a stubbornly persistent illusion,” but we cannot kill it, or save it, or stop it.

We can’t even slow it down.

We can, however, take time to notice it. To pay attention to it. And to “spend” it wisely. Anything else would be a waste of time.

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

Divine Providence: The Mayor, The Mob, and the Man in the Middle

The friend of a conqueror is but the last victim…”

 Isaac Asimov, Foundation and Empire

During the 70s and 80s, Providence experienced the demise of one empire and the rise of a new one. They both bore the outward veneer of honor and respectability. One criminal at its core, the other did a better job of concealing its genuine nature.

In 1970, perhaps the most powerful man in Rhode Island, with influence extending far beyond the borders of the state and even New England, was Raymond L.S. Patriarca. Respected within Organized Crime by more than just those who worked for him, many considered him a man of honor in an organization with a warped sense of the concept.

But he made no bones about what he was. He ran the family with a ruthless intensity masked by neighborhood generosity and concern for his domain, Federal Hill. All knew him as “the old man,” with a smile and a wave for most and a disdainful look for the cops and prosecutors who targeted him and his organization.

But like all things, after attaining the height of control within the organization, he began the inevitable decline until his death in 1984.

While the Patriarca legacy was reaching its zenith, an unknown phenomenon entered the scene. An up-and-coming lawyer—with a penchant for flair, a quick wit, and an uncontainable ego—began his own rise to prominence in Providence.

A man who, in that unique Rhode Island way, as an assistant Attorney General, once prosecuted Raymond Patriarca.

His ability to draw people to him, to gain their loyalty, brought him from the small city of Providence to the national stage of the Republican National convention where Gerald Ford considered him for the position of his Vice-President running mate.

Vincent A. “Buddy” Cianci began his rise to legendary status as a prosecutor, then turned his sights on politics. As the “old man” faded, “Buddy” began his rise.

The smallest state in the union offers every Rhode Islander unique access to the inner workings of the state. Almost to a person, the people of Rhode Island knew who “Raymond” and “Buddy” were with no need for a last name.

Many, if not most, had a story of encountering one or both men. Yet few people penetrated the inner circle of both empires.

Except for one man.

Pat Cortellessa—businessman, club-owner, entrepreneur, politician — is one of the few who rubbed shoulders with the wiseguys in joint businesses, worked alongside Buddy for mutual benefit until Buddy decided Pat was no longer useful, opposed Buddy in runs for the office of Mayor, and lived to tell the story.

Divine Providence: The Mayor, The Mob, and the Man in the Middle is the story few have ever heard, taking you inside the backroom deals, shady operations, and blood politics that was the Patriarca and Cianci eras.

Pre-order coming soon. Look for more announcements on sales, books signings, and media appearances.

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

Air bags and Squashed Dogs: America in Crisis (again)

With all the focus on Covid, economic upheaval, and trying to rid ourselves of the persistent infection and willful ignorance of anti-intellectualism, we have overlooked one of the most pressing issues of our time.

Now I am normally resistant to falling into the name calling game—no matter how satisfying it can be occasionally—but in this case I cannot refrain. I am, of course, talking about the morons (the kindest term I can find) for those people who drive cars with their dogs sitting on their laps.

Moronic doesn’t even come close to caption the idiocy of such actions. It is beyond me why any rational human being, while operating a several thousand-pound vehicle surrounded by thousands of other vehicles, would place their dog in a position to be turned into a bloody, shattered, dead mass squashed between their idiot owner and the airbag.

Airbags deploy outward at 300 mph with the explosive force of 20 shotgun shells at impacts of only 10-12 mph into a solid object. Since most accidents occur in a momentary lapse of attention (say when paying more attention to a dog instead of driving) and at slower speeds, the risk of the airbag deploying is real.

Whenever I see someone driving with the dog either looking out the window or sitting blissfully ignorant in the driver’s lap, I fully understand road rage.

Now before anyone assumes I am one of those animal fanatics who believe dogs should be in a car seat with restraints, I ain’t. Whenever I have a dog with me, they are free to roam the back seat, with the occasional lean forward to lick my ear and remind me of their presence. Truth be told, I envy their seatbelt free existence, something I once enjoyed through my entire childhood and lived to tell the story. (No need to inundate me with the benefit of seat belts, I know, I know, But I miss the freedom of bouncing around the inside of a car and riding a bike without a helmet. Okay the bike part I still do, so sue me.)

How dumb must one be to think letting the dog occupy what is essentially a potential blast zone is a good idea? Forget speed and red-light cameras, how about we identify any idiot dumb enough to drive with a dog on their lap and take their dog, their license, and their car and give them to someone with a brain?

Absent any alternative to prevent it, it may very well change my mind on the death penalty.

I hate to say this, not being much of a cat person, but I’ve never seen a cat in the driver’s seat of a car. I wonder if cats are smart enough to avoid such idiocy?

And if one person sends me a comment that the dog really enjoys it and it is the only place they will ride in the car, I will refer you to a local mental health facility. The last person who took directions from a dog was David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam serial killer.

The defense rests.

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JEBWizard Publishing (www.jebwizardpublishing.com) is a hybrid publishing company focusing on new and emerging authors. We offer a full range of customized publishing services.

Everyone has a story to tell, let us help you share it with the world. We turn publishing dreams into a reality. For more information and manuscript submission guidelines contact us at info@jebwizardpublishing.com or 401-533-3988.

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Teach Your Parents Well…

There’s an old joke about raising kids that goes like this.

When your first child eats dirt, you rush them to the Emergency Room.
When the second child eats dirt, you wash out their mouth.
When the third child eats dirt, you consider it dinner.

This amusing, yet perfectly adept illustration of child rearing is more illustrative of how our children train us, rather than the other way around.

This is the tough love part, watching as they try to apply the best of modern theory to a process that has been self-regulating since the first humans emerged on this planet.

My bet is on history.

Author

And so it is with my daughter, Kelsey, my son-in-law, Chuck, and their first child, Levi. While they were well prepared for the birth, they have bridled a bit at learning the lessons Levi is teaching them. They went into the process, as we all do, armed with the latest info on how to get your child on a schedule, how to regulate their feeding, and how to condition them to a sleep schedule.

What they haven’t yet realized, as all new parents are wont to do, is the child quickly takes charge and becomes the teacher.

It has been amusing to watch. Our natural reaction is to help, to tell them to trust themselves, ignore almost everyone (except Dr. Spock, of course), and ignore anything any would-be child raising expert offers as advice, particularly in the age of Google..

But we all have to learn this lesson by living it.

This is the tough love part, watching as they try to apply the best of modern theory to a process that has been self-regulating since the first humans emerged on this planet.

My bet is on history.

The amusing part is seeing how, moment by moment, step by step, little by little, Levi, without the benefit of spoken language or the written word, is gradually breaking them down to mold them into his trained and properly functioning parents.

Everyone told me being a grandparent would be the greatest of experiences, I just never expected it would give me a front row see to watch two educated, mature, intelligent humans being manipulated by mere murmurs, sighs, crying, and smiles into doing the bidding of a human being barely one month old.

It brings back memories of how Kelsey, at just about the same age, disabused us of our misconceptions and turned us into her concept of a parent. It is the way of the world.

I always knew they’d be great parents. And, with Levi’s patient yet persistent training, they are well on the way. It is the greatest show on earth.

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Metamorphosis

All the stages of raising a child from birth to adulthood have a distinctive experience about them.

From the first time a newborn’s face smiles in obvious recognition to seeing you, to their first words, their first steps, their first insistence on independence, each brings a sense of both immense joy and a bit of sorrow with each passing moment.

There is no greater achievement in life than to play a part in its continuity.

Author

It is a bittersweet experience raising a child, overwhelming at first until they become less dependent, when you realize how much you loved each moment of their total reliance on you. This change is subtle but relentless, until the day comes when you realize, while they will always be your child, they are no longer a child.

There is much satisfaction in seeing what was once such a tiny, fragile life go on out into the world and you know, as best as anyone can in this uncertain life, that they are now more than capable to thrive without you.

While we all knew this was the goal from the moment of birth, it doesn’t make the transition any easier.

Nothing brings this home more than the first time you see your child caring for their own little child. All those moments come rushing back in torrents of memories, tugging at your heart as you recall those times.

And yet this metamorphosis also brings with it a great sense of happiness, while your baby is no longer the child that depended on you for everything, she has become the most consequential of humans, a mother to a child,

There is no greater achievement in life than to play a part in its continuity.