He’s grown up in a small town, a petri dish we carefully planned and chose to spawn him in. Because it wasn’t the big city we were raised in complete with all those big city dangers. He had a stay at home Mom, a chance to play in Little League and be in a parade, and a box at the post office for letters to Santa. And we also bequeathed him our anxieties, such as they were when we had him. He’s gotten all his quirks honestly and he’s a first world kid.

My First World Kid on Shalavee.com

I was proud of him when he asked to see a talking doctor when he was feeling overwhelmed by the pressures of entering middle school. He was discombobulated and was asking for help so of course! And as we sat there at the intake appointment and the nice therapist had to ask him all the hardcore questions about sexual abuse, violence in his home, drug and alcohol abuse, and mental illnesses, it was so very clear that he truly has no street savvy. She asks, did he ever cut himself? He said, you mean intentionally? This is the kid who scolds me when I curse.

We are in this woman’s office because he asked for support! That is to be commended. And after all these questions that remind me that there are so many horrendous situations happening to children all over the world, my first thought was, we have no problems. Or we have such first world problems. These aren’t even private school stresses but public school ones. As of my 12th birthday, I had entered into a private school for girls and got to know a whole new level of stress hell as well as gained my savvy on the streets of the city.

My First World Kid on Shalavee.com

But not my kid. His innocence is so dear that I sit back and relax. When the questionnaire has been filled out, I’ll get to let this woman take the helm and aid him as only a third-party neutral can be trusted to do. She’ll give him what he needs and I’ll have given her to him as is my job. I have kept him safe and naïve and happy up until this point. And I’m OK passing some of the buck.

I know that bubble is about to pop, as it must. And I am glad and proud of the job I’ve done so far. He’s amazing and I hope he’ll know just how amazing the bigger he gets. We’re living the sheltered American Dream in the meanwhile. We’re the first world Subway sub eating, Netflix kid movie watching, piano lesson paying, one boy and one girl family of four. And I am grateful beyond words for all of this.

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