Sometimes, The Apple Does Far From The Tree

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They say that I am a replica of my mother.  The hair, the eyes, the face and the mannerisms.  Being that she is an amazing and beautiful woman, I take that as a compliment.

In turn, my children have a pleasing combination of my husband and I.  Big brown eyes, olive skin,  kindness in their hearts and a healthy dose of stubbornness and drive.  We love them both to pieces.

But it was after a phone call that I received from my twenty year-old laid back son that I thought to myself,  Who is this young man?  “Mom”, he said softly,  “I don’t want you to freak out but…I bought a shotgun.”

What?

My son?  

My son has a gun?  

My little sweet guy owns his own gun?

I have to admit that although it was not a complete shock to hear this from him, an avid fisherman and outdoorsman who has been begging me to let him hunt since he was younger, the thought of him owning a gun raised the hairs along the nape of my neck to record highs.

After attempting to remain calm and pretending that I was not horrified, I asked him to tell me more about his purchase.  He bought it from a friend who is a hunter.  “Don’t worry mom, my roommate has a locked gun case for his shotguns so I can keep it there.”  

I knew that his very nice roommate was a hunter and that he stored his guns locked up in their apartment, but I had already tucked that knowledge away in the very rear of my brain, convincing myself that it was not so.  Now, my son had his gun to add to their growing collection.  

I am going to let you tell your father about your purchase when he calls you this evening- was the last thing I said to him before hanging up.

This fine young man of mine grew up in one of the most liberal towns in the country.  A wonderful place to grow up in but a town where everything is questioned and where political correctness is spewed out of its resident’s mouths ad nauseam.   A town where the word blacktop was banned and replaced with, pavement.  A happy valley  filled with distinguished “experts” on every topic and where democracy, is sometimes a curse.

My husband and I (well, my husband mostly) taught him to gently dispose of insects found in our home by placing them outside and setting them free.  We taught him to deal with conflict using words instead of violence.  We even discouraged him when he pretended to shoot us with his little hand.

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wikipedia.org

Save the whales!

Free the birds!

Think globally, act locally!

War is not the answer!

Be Green!

Teach Peace!

Coexist!

These were the bumper stickers he grew up reading on the way to religious education on Sunday afternoons.

At nearly 21 years of age, in addition to being a hunter, he has decided to study law enforcement and become a police officer.   Really?  How did this happen?  Who does he take after?  Where did this come from?  

Although  I know that hunting, when all rules and  protocols are followed, is a safe sport and that many people grow up having guns in their homes, it will take me some time to get used to the idea that this will be a part of our lives.

 I cannot help but wonder,  how and when my wonderful son decided to become his own person.  Someone who follows his passions and interests regardless of what others say.  Someone who is confident in the person he has become and who does not feel the need to follow in anyone’s footsteps.  A hardworking, responsible and compassionate young man I could not be more proud of.

It is times like these that I am reminded that sometimes, the apple does fall far from the tree – but it is a good apple, nevertheless.

 

 

 

78 thoughts on “Sometimes, The Apple Does Far From The Tree

  1. I understand the worry. Somehow, my 18-yr-old owning his own firearms seems okay as long as he lives under my roof, where I am still between him and harm. The thought of him moving to his OWN place with them . . . not so comfortable with that. It’s not because he is in any way incompetent. He is very safe and experienced and far more sensible than the vast majority of people twice his age. It’s because if anything is going to happen where he would need one, I would want to be there between it and him. It’s hard to let our boys be adults with adult responsibilities and consequences. I’m sure, though, that if your son has half the good sense and character of his mother, he will be fine. Sounds like you’ve done a good job with him. All the best to you both.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for chiming in on this, Piper. I knew hunting was part of your family and I value your opinion on this. 🙂 It’s something I will continue to try to get used to and to pray that nothing ever goes wrong! Plus, now I will definitely have to shop at Cabela’s! LOL.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. My 14 year old has a compound bow he got for Christmas from my in-laws, and has expressed interest in hunting with it. The rifle isn’t too far behind, I’m sure.

    It’s probably the only interest we don’t share. I’ve never hunted!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fishing and hunting for youth has really picked up! I found that out when searching for a college for my son with a competitive fishing team! There are many! He will be President of the team next year (Senior yr). Hunting seems to follow fishing. I can think of many other activities that are worse than those!! Ay, Dios Mio! 🙂

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  3. A few stories for you, dulcita Maria…

    #1. I have handled firearms– pistols and rifles, generally speaking. This was by way of Scouting, time as a security guard, and one church activity (will get to that in a moment). I remain the same person I ever was. That didn’t stop a Dutchman from strenuously insisting online that I must therefore be mad with power. Whatever.

    #2. The leader of my quorum at church divides his working time between the military and law enforcement. He volunteered to oversee the range for the activity I mentioned earlier (incidentally, it was on my birthday, hehe). He warned all the men in church that he was mean and strict. I quickly rejoined, saying, “That’s as it should be. Better that you be strict than someone getting hurt or killed.”

    Then he mentioned in one of our quorum meetings on a different day about seeing a coyote wandering around his house. Now, there really is a gun nut in our quorum, who quickly asked him, “Did you shoot it?” and our soldier/cop said, “No… because then I’d have to arrest myself, for illegal discharge of a firearm within city limits.” Now, see, that’s a good cop right there… he knows that everytime he discharges a firearm *legally*, that means administrative leave and a mess of paperwork. Good cops don’t have itchy trigger fingers.

    I have every reason to believe that your son regards both firearms and law enforcement in the same manner as I do and this friend and leader of mine. One last thing… I have respect for anyone who will only eat what they are willing to cultivate or kill. If that means the person is a vegan (but is not militantly pushy to others about it), that person has my respect. If that means the person is a hunter who kills only to feed friends, family, or others in need– same thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s good to know. It’s funny because my son is a catch and release fisherman, yet he loves making duck stew. LOL. He is a good person and that is what matters. Silver hair looks great on you but I’m afraid this is going to speed up the grey/silver process for me! AY!

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    1. Thanks, Linda. We do have a great relationship with him and he tells us things we may or may not want to know! LOL. He is such a sweet and caring person, partly why I couldn’t picture him going into law enforcement but at the same time, the reason he wants to serve others. I hope you have a peaceful weekend with all your owl hat making. 🙂

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  4. Guns for hunting: OK. Gives me the willies, but I see the point. In fact, it’s the hunters who are out in the woods, who know seasons and weather and the importance of wild lands. We need hunters.

    Semi automatic rifles for defense from the government? Not so much. Give us thorough background checks at least.

    Will not tell you the tale of one of my brothers who managed to assemble and fire a handgun, after digging up its various parts hidden around the house I grew up in. He’s fine. Everybody’s fine. (Ai yai yai). A gun locker, as your son knows, is key.

    Law enforcement is a fine and noble profession. We need sensible men like your son to be police officers. You know that, of course, and it probably doesn’t make the prospect any less daunting — it’s a risky business — but I for one am grateful.

    Hope your children know how lucky they are with your olive skin (speaking as one with a severe shortage of melanocytes). And warm hearts too? Can I move in?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL, of course you can move in! The more the merrier! Guns will always give me the willies, but I will have to develop a strong respect for them and for my son. Life takes all kinds of turns, it’s how you handle those turns that matters. Yikes on your brother and his gun incident! Glad everyone is okay. Have a wonderful weekend (try not to think about election results.) 🙂

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  5. Sounds like you and your wonderful husband laid a good foundation for the young man. I love that he so respects you he told you about his purchase even though he knew it would make you uncomfortable initially. He’s the type of individual we NEED in law enforcement – someone kind, centered, respectful, and confidant in their abilities and obligations.
    Happy almost-anniversary, Maria!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, Shel – thank you so much for your anniversary wish! You are the first person to wish us a happy 25th!! Life is good. 🙂 And thank you for your kind words about my predicament with my son and guns. I am very proud of him and he is a sweat heart. I will forever worry but I guess that’s my job. Have a wonderful weekend! 🙂

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  6. Girl, all your blog posts are good, but this one is exceptional: tight, neat, powerful; amusing without seeming to work at it. I just continue to be terribly impressed by you, and proud to call you my Cuch. Keep up the good work.

    xoxo Kate

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My Kate!! This means so much to me coming from you! I am glad you enjoyed this post and I know you can relate to having a child choose a “different” career path. All we can do is be there for them and support them all the way. xoxoxo

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  7. Guns aren’t my thing, and they scare the shiat outta me, but I am positive your son will be very responsible with his!! It’s not every day a son calls his mama to tell her this, very respectable!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha! After he called me, I made sure to make HIM tell my husband! My husband was not surprised, not thrilled, but not surprised. He accepts it and understands that in order for my son to become a police officer, he’s going to have to get used to weapons. I’ll be here praying the rosary, thank you very much! 🙂

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  8. I’m sure the head he has on his shoulders is just as good as the one on his momma’s shoulders. It’s a scary thought, but I have no doubt you raised a responsible young man and that everything will be fine.

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  9. Oh Maria, I wish I could come over right now, pour a glass of wine, pull up a chair and say, ‘Right, let’s talk’. My ex (father of my children) to whom I was married for 22 years worked for the Dept of Corrections. He had guns, always. Kept in a safe, responsible and all that. He used to go hunting sometimes but mostly his guns, he told me, were for ‘protection’. Growing up in England where only farmers had guns this was not an easy thing for me, having guns in the house. But in our nice peaceful town where we lived, which sounds just like yours, just about everyone it seemed had a gun, right wing, left wing, PC? Didn’t matter. My kids grew up with them but rarely had much to do with them unless their father took them shooting from time to time. My daughter loved it best of all 😉 Then my middle boy told me when he got to his teens that he wanted to join the military. At a time when soldiers were going to Iraq. When we moved here things changed radically for us but he then decided he wanted to be a policeman just like your son and the first thing he did was sign up for the Army Cadets. He has a natural aim like his father and won a prize representing his troop at a national shooting contest as a crack shot. Things are very different here now – criminals have guns, cops carry guns as needed but still not every day as in the States. Along the way, after school, college and then a painful break up with his girlfriend last year, my son is now on the verge of starting training to become a paramedic. He is 26 at the end of the month and figures by the time he is 30 he’ll be fully trained. He has always felt he wants to do something that will ‘make a difference’. All this to say, and I’m rambling I know, but I hope that by sharing all of this it helps you feel better about your son, who it seems is going for it as a police officer. You can be so, so proud of him and all he hopes to achieve in life. What a wonderful young man you have raised Maria. I’m so proud of him and I don’t even know him 🙂 It is a shock and yes, a huge adjustment for you and of course always the endless worry – and don’t you just love it when the first words out of your kids’ mouths is: ‘Mom, I don’t want to worry you…but……’ Yikes!!!! Right there, I’m on the floor with worry o_O – but you’ve raised beautiful children not only in looks but in values, strength and huge love. Hugs to you my friend…and sorry for this long message, think we drank the bottle dry 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, Sherri! You are so awesome! I did feel like we were sitting together sharing stories and drinking after reading your comment. 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing your gun stories with me. It definitely made me feel better! Good for your son for pursuing the paramedic route. We really couldn’t be more proud of our sons who want to be of service to people, even if it means putting themselves in danger, huh? 🙂 Gotta take things as they come and one day at a time! xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I love your attitude. I make my own rules for our house. We have guns in a locked safe. My rule when he hunts is: guns are loaded last when he takes off for hunting and unloaded first thing
    when he returns. And they are never loaded. I used to be paranoid about it with babies. I’m more relaxed now. Scott is much more careful now that Emma hunts with him. Your son sounds responsible, you should be able to sleep at night 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was looking forward to your take on this, Julie! It takes time to get used to the whole idea and to feel comfortable with it but I know he/we will take all the necessary precautions. I was nervous enough knowing he loves ice fishing and worry throughout the winter when he is out on the ice. Now, I can worry year-round. Yippee! 🙂 LOL

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  11. I think it’s great that you raised your son to believe that he could have different perspectives than your own but that you’d love and respect him anyway. I suspect it’s one of the many reasons he has the courage enough to chase his own dreams even if they might not be what you would’ve chosen for him. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hola, chica! We have always told our kids that we will support them as long as they are safe, happy and compassionate. Kindness is key! It doesn’t mean I won’t be a super worried mom, though! 🙂

      Hope you are well. xo

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  12. Growing up, my father headed to WV for a week of hunting every year. This was the only time he could truly relax from an extremely stressful job. I remember seeing his orange hunting suit, his big boots and all of the snacks my mother packed for him. I never once saw his hunting rifle. As some of the comments above suggest, most hunters and gun owners are responsible. Many of the crimes committed are with guns that are stolen. Sleep well my friend, you raised a nice shiny apple! I hope you’re feeling well. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You work at a police station, is that right? Thanks for sharing your story about your father. Sounds like it really helped him relax and deal with stress. 🙂

      He is a pretty shiny, tart and wholesome apple! 🙂 Gracias! xo

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  13. Do not read Art’s comment here, Mrs. B. Just delete it. It was full of erronious speculation.

    My stepson from marriage one, very grown now, hunted and hunts with his father with guns and bows and they eat the meat and make jerky out of every ounce, and all was and has been well and good. For 20 years, I’m talking. I wanted to pass along this little bit of anecdotal safe-and-sound evidence.

    It is natural to wonder why, but, really, I think your son got your curiosity and is putting it someplace different than you have. That is all, my friend. You and Mr. B have made sure he knows his safety rules, and that is your job to reinforce it again.

    Good to see you posting!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello, My Dear Mr. B #2, Thank you for your kind and reassuring words. I posted this knowing that others would have opinions and thoughts they would express. That is ok. I do agree with you that we need to stick with facts and not erroneous speculation. It’s a hot topic and one becoming unfortunately too close to our hearts. Too many tragedies in our recent past.

      Thank you for sharing the story about your step son. He sounds like a respectful and safe young/grown man. 🙂

      My guy is a wonderful soul and although I will forever be worried, I support his decisions and respect the career he has chosen. 🙂 🙂

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      1. I’m sure Son B will be the best police officer ever, Mrs. B, because of the way you and Mr. B brought him up.

        What Art stated was his opinion on this hot-button issue, and I was worried about reactions. Particularly, yours. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m sure it will be fine… but I am now wondering about the overall gun statistics… like how you are more likely to be shot with your won gun or a gun in your house… or by accidental discharge of a gun… and how many of the random shooting that happen so often are involving hunting guns that were legally purchased and correctly locked up. I mean, that kid at the school in Washington, he was a hunter… hunters can go nuts too… I am not trying to alarm you, but very few guns are bought by people who are planning to kill someone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hear what you are saying, Art. My preference is not to have guns at all. However, it is something I will accept and support because it will be a part of my son’s life – particularly as a police officer. I used to worry and still worry about him ice fishing and falling through the ice, now I will have MORE worries to add to my list! AY!

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        1. Your focus is in the wrong place. That news is more of tip of the iceberg for lack of mental health treatment. Read this: http://prisonprotest.com/2014/08/08/another-mentally-ill-inmate-dies-in-restraint-chair-sparking-lawsuit/

          This happened *in my hometown area*.

          Or maybe this is more on point: http://www.keprtv.com/news/local/Family-and-friends-mourn-the-loss-of-two-Kennewick-children-262626521.html

          This happened *in my city not even 15 minutes away*.

          People keep yapping about gun control… it’s not about gun control. It’s about how our society still treats people with mental illness, especially those who are impoverished, like illegitimate children. I’m speaking from experience.

          But given our previous interactions, I don’t think you understand that, so I’m going to stop and ask as politely as I can that you don’t waste my time.

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  15. Even we good apples, who emulate many of our parents qualities and traits, unfold into our own. It’s a metamorphosis that some mother’s can work with and others will challenge — forever. 🙂 I like the subtle acceptance I sense in your story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So nice to hear from you, Eric. I cherish your wise words and thoughts always. 🙂 He is such a gentle and kind soul. My acceptance, though it may appear subtle as I get familiar with what the “new”, will never waver when it comes to my kids. Thanks for your kind words. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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