Like lots of little boys, he makes spears and swords and arrows out of backyard sticks.
He created a tomohawk from modified found objects held together with dental floss, which turned out to work a whole lot better than expected and required adult supervision or risked actual injury. Fortunately the only foul was to a case of Diet Coke, and he helped clean that mess.
When a cardboard tube becomes a rifle to be used against imaginary enemies, it is not difficult to imagine the rest of the storyline, to feel the anticipatory anxiety. I've read novels and seen films and know about the knock at the door. I understand that it may be unwise to borrow worry over this now. Fighting a war and finding a career are choices for children who get to grow up. I am grateful for his growing. Even the part where he's learning to fight with language, wielding sharp words.

Right now I try to remain neutral on his military interest; I mean, I can't even begin to formulate a lecture on the convoluted and not always conscionable history of American interventions in the world. He does know about folks - family and friends - who have served honorably and bravely, and I don't mean to disparage their commitment. But I can expose him to other kinds of activities I’d love to see him pursue: art, nature, science, literature. I can impress upon him the need for seat belts and ballistic vests. I can pray for his safety, and for his growing up. And I can remind him, with sincerity, that he can be and do anything.

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