From the Author

Monday, October 3, 2016

A Chance Meeting

I was sitting in an airport terminal waiting to board a plane, when I met a 17 year old "Mike".  He was sitting next to another woman.  I initially assumed they were together but she was just another traveler.  I spoke to both and Mike was obviously very anxious, nervious and was constantly cracking his finger joints.  He had short, curly red hair, attractive with deeply blue eyes filled with sadness. I could feel his pain as he blurted out, "I am going back home to my mother since my father and stepmother don't want to deal with me." My mother doesn't want me either."  As I asked questions, it was apparent that his father and stepmother had abusive behaviors related to their substance abuse. His mother also was not available to Mike because she was often intoxicated. He reports he had been suspended from school because of an "incident that wasn't my fault." I left to go to the restroom and when I returned I had to sit in another seat.  Mike came across the room to sit next to me.

I told him that regardless of what his parents chose to do with their lives, he, at 17, was able to decide for himself what kind of life he wanted.  I talked to him about his desire to find a special lady. That could lead to marraige, possibly children and the need to have a education and a job to support his family. He immediately stated. "I never want to have children." It was obvious that his childhood had not been peaceful or safe.

I told him that he had the opporunity to take control of his life, I encouraged him take advantage of any education and job training, strive for excellence in all his endeavors because I believed in him and his future.  I told him a story about an abused man who took his pain and used it to empathize and support other abused children in volunteer work. This man vowed to be the best father he could be for his own children and faced life with resolve and faith. As I gazed into Mike's eyes, I could see hope and some excitement as his body relaxed and became quiet.  He left to board the plane.

Parents need to remember the impact they have on their children.  It is a right and a tremendous responsibility to provide for the emotional, spirititual, psychological and physical needs of all children. Please look out for our wounded children who have a hard exterior but a hurt and open interior.  It does take a village, country, world to raise children! Make a difference in a child's life!

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