Our Children and Y2K

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Those of us with children have some special Y2K concerns to consider. Much of this is really common sense, which for some is not so common. Anyway, one aspect that I have not seen much posted about is addressing children's attention span. Many get bored quickly. Lots of things come into play here. Some children are more 'loners' than others, and require less attention comparitively, content to amuse themselves a good part of the time. Others are not this way. Then we have some who are 'only' children and some who have brothers and/or sisters with which to argue, er, I mean play. Certainly, a lot has to do with their ages and current 'lifestyle' also.

One thing that we learned in doing our last Y2K drill is that it is wise to have a bunch of things for them to do thought out ahead of time. It can be helping out with work around the house, playing compliant games, or any number of activities. Our drills were actually fun for the kids, as we had planned them carefully and taken this into consideration. We used the latest drill as a learning experience for them (and us), to pretend that we were living in some ways like the pilgrims did. They were actually disappointed when I turned the juice back on and the 'game' was over.

Anyway, one question that occurred to me was how quickly will they get bored with it all, and then what? Having a drill for two or three days is one thing, going two or three weeks, or longer, is quite another. I have posted before that I believe that children are, somewhat paradoxically, the most susceptible and at the same time the most resilient of us all. People that I have spoken to have told me that during the Great Depression, for example, the kids just made up their own toys and games, and that there wasn't much money for most, and so most people, including the kids, were in the same boat. There wasn't a lot of jealousy between children over material things since so many were poor. They got through it though. There may be some parallels between that period and what we are looking at with Y2K, while at the same time there will also be major differences.

The above are just some of my "thinking out loud" kind of thoughts. I am really just hoping to get some good discussion going about the subject of children and Y2K in general. Comments Welcome.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 17, 1999


Rob, Getting them involved in the practical aspects of life in meaningful ways is one, logical solution.

My 9-year old son was thrilled to announce that he had planted POUNDS of sweet potatoes in the commuity garden last week.

AND, he did it with a kid's club that will be doing outings like this all year... it's designed to include them in creating the food that we will all be eating soon.

Think of projects around your home that won't be "automatic" after Y2K, and create elements that the kids can help with or take on as THEIR contribution.

Think more about homeschooling and shared schooling with a community group. If you think schools will be able to go on, in your neck of the woods, then speak to your childrens' teachers to encourage them to start incorporating more studies about self-reliant peoples, such as the Native Americans, the pioneers, and the Hawaiians.

The elementary school here has a third grade garden. Perhaps, parents can volunteer to help schools begin gardens for all grade levels... and then, perhaps, they could be used to start a food bank.

There are many ideas, as long as we think less about ENTERTAINING our kids and more about ENGAGING them.

-- Sara Nealy (keithn@aloha.net), April 17, 1999.

P.S. My post Y2K dream is that the kidspeak: "whatEVER!", "right, yeah sure" and "DUH-uh" are replaced by:

"Sure", "OK, Mom" and "Excuse me, what did you say?"

I can dream, can't I?

-- Sara Nealy (keithn@aloha.net), April 17, 1999.

Hi Sara: Thanks for the thoughtful post. You raise a number of good points. Certainly there is an important difference between them being entertained and engaged. I have met with the school leaders on three separate occasions and have made some good progress along the lines that you have already outlined. For one thing, they are seriously contemplating having a few weeks lesson plans go home before the Christmas break so that if there is no school we parents can use the lesson plans. I have looked into and received some homeschooling information also, but haven't made a decision yet about that as a longer term solution, or even possibly just doing it in lieu of school.

I have had less success in trying to get the school to change current curriculum to enphasize self-reliant life-styles, although in fairness they already do include this to some extent. Regarding your 'dream', I am LOL and thinking that that really would be something now wouldn't it.

I hope that the Forum shows interest in this subject. We speculate about so many Y2K unknowns and uncertainties, but our cildren will be with us, and need us, and we have to be ready and prepare for them as best we can.

Keep those comments coming.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 17, 1999.

Hi Rob, what a great Dad, thinking about the Kids! I dont know if this is helpful or not, but just want to let you know after hurricane Iniki, we missed TV,(I still am waiting for a re run of part 7 of Stephen Kings mini series) and electric forms of entertainment at first(I say "we" because I'm a big kid too!) but after a couple weeks, we couldn't talk our kids into watching it.(We were sent to Maui for showers, so there was tv.We wanted to sleep in, and they were at the age of needing to be watched.) Even I broke the "habit" What age are your kids?It amazed me how there imagination kicked in. They loved being part of the survival solution.My 2 yr old helped carry, help in the garden, feed animals.ect.( The basics took all day) I want to admit it was no picnic having young kids and no power.(Or water. calk the bathtub) They got so dirty,(playin in the mud is extreemly entertaining) Got pinwirms the first week.So what did they do to entertain themselves? They played all those "old fashon" imagionary games. Hide and seek, Cowboys and Indians, Pogs, cards,dolls, ect. All I mainly remember is no one I knew was bored! If the do complain, (like now,) they always think of something to do real fast when you mention JOBS!We couldn't let them ride bikes,or skates because of glass. This they missed.As for the dream part,If you don't have a dream, you can't have a dream come true. Always ask your kids "Can you re- phrase that?", when they answer you back in ways that are unacceptable. My kids aren't perfect, but they're not allowed to use the above mentioned lingo. If they do, they get another chance to say it right. Me too, I confess!You are a special dad to be thinking of your kids!Mahalo!

-- Justin Case (justin case@Aloha.com), April 17, 1999.

Justin Case : Aloha and mahalo to you too! Our keiki will need kokua from us to get through whatever is coming up. Their needs to holo and play, as well as receive a honi and hug will not diminish. They will go from one thing to the next, wikiwiki, as keiki always do. And mahalo for your comments about "re-phrasing".

Children so often want to be helpful and engaged - all we have to do is know how to encourage it.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 17, 1999.

Rob,Cynthia here...are we on the same wave length today or what? I've always wondered why there were no posts on children here... I have 5 children,3 of which are grown up..A son who is 25,married and with 2 little ones,a boy 2 and a girl,6 months---my daughter is 19---my other son will be 18 in June---my twin boys will be 9 this September... the boys have been very curious about all the time I've spent on the computer lately,and all the extra stuff coming into the house...I've explained as best I can,there could be a big problem with the computers that run everything after Xmas,and we're making sure we're okay till they fix it...this has launched numerous discussions,with the typical kid type questions like,how long will it last,will it hit our house or everyones,how can I watch tv,what about when it gets dark,etc. I've detected no fear at all,mainly because I think the way you present it to them makes it or breaks it...at first it was mainly curiousity,but now they have progressed to a different level... Today we went down to a big local antique mall/flea market,and just wandered around for an hour,looking at all the neat old stuff...the boys found things all over that didn't need electricity,it was a great challenge for them..we ended up with really nice cast iron fry pans,ladles,trivets,and 2 big kettles...they felt very proud of themselves for contributing... they save all the 2 liter soda bottles for me,and we went seed shopping yesterday...we're collecting books,paper and art supplies,board games...I feel,like me,they have activated a part of their brains that has never been utilized... One of their biggest frustrations is that when they mention the phrase y2k to the neighborhood kids,all they get back is a,"huh?"... They can't understand why their parents aren't on the internet like I am,trying to find ways to take care of everyone...all in all,it's making us communicate a whole lot more,we are learning from each other,and thats great... All said and done,I asked them the other day if there wasn't any electricity around for awhile,or we had to take turns with it,share it,what would they miss? My one twin said,video games!! The other sat for a minute(he's my thinker,a little old man trapped in that small body),and said he wouldn't miss anything..as long as he had his dad,his mom and his twin brother,he'd be fine...kind of nice to know that at least one of my kids prefers my company over something you can plug in!! Communication is the key,talking,sharing,learning...they want the same answers we do,when,where,how long,what will happen to me...I think it's only fair to start preparing them now, and letting them get a handle on it,instead of springing it on them later...Cynthia

-- Cynthia Yanicko (yanicko@infonline.net), April 17, 1999.

I'll just be glad when I quit hearing "doesn't taste like store-bought"

-- R A (R A@wildcats.com), April 17, 1999.

My husband and I have adopted and are homeschooling out 2 youngest grandchildren. We always keep lots of arts & crafts materials around. We have lots of workbooks, storybooks, colorbooks and extra projects. I have been setting aside some of the extra stuff for Y2K. I have picked up some Barbies and Barbie clothes and put them with the Y2K supplies.

My 5YO was so excited last week when she got a free flashlight in the mail because we renewed her Sesame Street Magazine. She wanted to know when Y2K gets here so she can use her Y2K flashlight. She asked me to store it in the Y2K cuboard with the extra food.

One thing to plan for-BIRTHDAYS-Summer will be 6 on Jan. 8. I have packed away some cake mixes, frosting in a can and instant pudding to take the place of ice cream. I plan to watch sales for extra gifts for both of our girls

-- Homeschooling Grandma (Donna@glennet.com), April 18, 1999.

to homeschooling grandma,I forgot about those holidays after New Years in all the prepping we're doing...great idea...my daughters birthday is Jan.3rd,she'll be 20,but hey,you're never to old for birthdays and presents... your grandchildren are adopted? if it's not too personal,what happened? we are hoping to have our beloved twins finalized this year...email me if you want to,and don't want it on the Forum column,it's my real email address..Cynthia

-- Cynthia Yanicko (yanicko@infonline.net), April 18, 1999.

We adopted our grandaughters because our daughter and her boyfriend were into drugs. We had guardianship of the oldest, Summer, since she was 10 mo. old. Her younger sister Ashlee was picked up by CPS and we were told that if we did not want to adopt her, she would be put up for adoption with strangers and we would never see her again. She has been with us for 2 years. The girls are 15 months apart and are very close. We started homeschooling Summer in Kindergarten last Aug. She is doing 1st grade work in reading and math and we are all glad we decided to hoomeschool.

-- Homeschooling Grandma (Donna@glennet.com), April 18, 1999.

First of all, my husband and I have a 4 year old daughter. She will turn 5 on December 3. She does not know what Y2K is. How do you explain this to a 4 year old? I have had a hard enough time explaining the possible ramifications to ADULTS. I have tried, in my head, to simplify it for her, but it sounds even *scarier* then. "Hey honey the lights might go out for quite a while in about seven months, but don't worry...." ???? So I have chosen, for now, not to say anything. Let her enjoy her life, let her daddy and I prepare for the worst.

As far as what to do if Y2K is anything above a 3, I will just be glad if she is eating food, drinking water and not sick. I have bought several jigsaw puzzles and stored them away, along with books, board games, and workbook type things. (Kindergarten and first grade level--who know how long it may last?) She is supposed to start school the fall of 2000 (is in preschool now) so I am wondering about that and trying to collect as much information and materials on homeschooling a first grader as possible.

The people I worry about most are my friends who have little kids and are EXPECTING little ones at the end of this year!!! They are all DGI's and I cringe at the thought of what will happen to their children should Y2K be major or even semi-major. One friend will have a 5 year old, a 17 month old, and a 3 month old when the year rolls over and they are totally DGI. I have mentioned it to them several times but they ignore me. Another friend is getting married May 1, his wife-to-be is expecting a child October 1 (yeah, I know, I know) and they are moving into a house that will not be done being built until NOVEMBER! They, too, DGI's.

Now I'm depressed.

-- K (bill_n_kellie91@hotmail.com), April 18, 1999.

There was a thread a long time ago about kids and Y2K and "do you tell them, what do you tell them, etc." I think the majority consensus was, tell them what you think they can handle and involve them in the process as much as possible. My daughter Rykah is 2 1/2. She's a little amazon who would probably be delighted if Y2K sent us back to a world where she could grow up to be XENA, WARRIOR PRINCESS. (I think Xena's cool. So does she. It's the only TV I actually let her watch, other than Star Trek. I am warping her brain, I know.) I tell her about everything. But she's too young. I tell her as if she is old enough and we're having a conversation but usually her eyes sort of glaze over if it takes longer than 5 seconds to explain. Today she got great fun out of helping us pack cans of stuff into big 33gal buckets for storage. And I'm sure she'll be "helping" with the garden (helping by acting like mulch probably, and we'll have to scrape the topsoil off her). I've considered, for her:
1. Buying a couple pairs of shoes in the next few sizes up for her.
2. Ditto on clothes.
3. Similar method on toys for presents etc., and hair bands and pretty stuff like that.< BR> 4. Making sure she has her "own" garden plot with stuff she'll like to eat and think is pretty.
5. Since we live in a very rural area, making sure I have plenty of bug foggers, bug spray, and lice shampoo... small things that make life miserable if you have to go without when 'infestations' occur town-wide. Kids bounce, they rebound better than adults for most things... but also absorb and impress much more easily. I think as long as we don't let ourselves get scared, as long as we feel we're competent to deal with it and have a good time doing so, she'll be fine. PJ in TX P.S. And if my computer isn't functional she will be thanking God, since it is her main competition for attention!

-- PJ Gaenir (fire@firedocs.com), April 18, 1999.

Thanks to all for the thoughtful responses. I picked up some good tips that previously were not considered, and perhaps some of you can say the same.

PJ: A special thanks to you for the summary/consensus regarding the older related thread.

To our children does the future belong. With our guidance and love, they will be the builders and form the basis for what seems to me as hunanities next "two steps forward, one step back" continuation.

(Offline, Rob)

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 18, 1999.

A Heart For Children

One hundred years from now
It will not matter
What kind of car I drove,
What kind of house I lived in,
How much I had in my bank
Nor what my clothes looked like.

One hundred years from now
It will not matter
What kind of school I attended,
What kind of typewriter I used,
How large or small my church,
But the world may be
... a little better because...
I was important
in the life
of a child.

Written By: Unknown

My kids are 21 and 26, out on their own, and doing well as loving, growing adults. I'm so grateful to be among adults at Yourdon's who care about children. Thanks.

-- Donna Barthuley (moment@pacbell.net), April 18, 1999.

Suggestion: try turning off the tube NOW. then, if there are power outages, etc- no TV, no problem. You won't have to listen to them whine when they can't watch their favorite shows and you're all stressed out as it is. by then, they'll be pros at figuring out other ways to entertain themselves just like kids used to do (no TV in the Depression days by the way).

Otherwise- probably a good idea to have some extras around in next size boots, shoes and outerclothing(jackets, hats, gloves)] Otherwise- just food, some treats, meds, etc-

the best gift you can give your kids, IMO, is to let them be useful.

My kid is praying that y2k is so bad, they close the schools forever!!

-- anita (hillsidefarm@drbs.com), April 18, 1999.

Anita: Geez, today my 8 year old said the same thing about hoping schools are closed forever, with a stated desire to be home schooled! BTW, I turned the T.V. off for most of last summer, despite a bit of protest etc., and all of us managed to 'survive' just fine.

One aspect of this subject that has not been discussed yet on this thread but could be very interesting is that of the psychological impact on children with regard to the change in their routine. For example, I remember reading somewhere that children, especailly younger kids, derive great comfort from their routine and can easily be traumatized by a sudden major change to what is their every day routine/.

Anyone up for a discussion about this area of the subject?

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 18, 1999.

Routines like bedtime stories don't have to change much, just the lighting. You could introduce 'spit bathing' earlier as a variation to the bath. We turned the tv off quite a while ago, and the kids never noticed. Each kid has a backpack with personal toys and art supplies. Food routines might be different, as far as prep times go. We're storing easy to fix foods for the initial outages and will work in the more time consuming foods gradually. Kids just want to be with their parents and siblings more than anything else. Things will change, but they can learn to handle change...that's not so bad.

-- shy ann (shy@really.shy), April 18, 1999.

Shy: Backpacks have been popular with the kids for quite a while now, mostly for school but also for when we have gone camping and hiking. As far as food goes, one suggestion that makes good sense if you are planning to use food storage is to get used to the food, perhaps in a gradual way - Wheat especially, since some people can have allergic reactions to it when it goes from an occasional food item to a mainstay.

I agree that them being able to handle change, and learning to do so, is very important. It is actually important for us all, don't you think? I have posted before that two things which will be of immense value are adaptability and flexibility. For love there remains no substitute.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 18, 1999.


I am very concerned about children's reponse to Y2K and the potential for trauma.

Most adults aren't terribly good at change, so they will be pre- occupied with what their own actions should be. Nothing leaves children with a sense of uncertainty more than seeing their Rock of Gibraltar (their parents) in turmoil.

We need to help children on a community basis, not just in our own families. Parents who may not be reacting proactively to Y2K will be dealing with their own stress and grief, depression, etc. I suggest we should begin by community efforts to inform children. Places like school and Sunday School, provide ideal opportunities for children to learn how life IS possible without Nintendo, and to help them feel PART of the solution.

What we most want to avoid is to have our "arrows into the future" be caught in the fray.

Consider talking with your school principal, school psychologist/counselor, your religious school leaders, and also, the civic clubs in your town.

Why not create new activities, such as a Senior Citizens group that hosts a Children's Community Garden?

-- Sara Nealy (keithn@aloha.net), April 18, 1999.

Hi again Sara. Some of the exact things you talk about I have done - like get together with the principal, counselors, etc., - perhaps you missed my earlier response towards the top of this thread.

Anyway, you are correct to bring up how kids look to us as examples and how important we resond to change is to them. If they see their parents taking change calmly, as a result of some forethought and preparation, then I would think they would be in a position to psychologically react much better also.

One thing we did that was great was go to vacation last Fall in Amish country, where they saw first-hand how people can live differently, radically differently, and be content. It was quite a lesson for us all.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 18, 1999.

Yes, Rob, I know YOU are a "proactive" parent. And a +considerate, generous forum member here... thanks to you, we are discussing this most important subject.

The suggestion was really to underscore the idea as a suggestion to others who may still be figuring out how many units of grains and beans to order!

Interesting that you visited Amish country. We used to live within a few hours of Lancaster, and made the trip, too. Many lessons can be learned from the Native Americans, from the Hawaiians, and from other, indigenous peoples around the planet. Good point for study with children.

-- Sara Nealy (keithn@aloha.net), April 18, 1999.

Sara: Got it, and thanks for the kind words.

Another thing regarding children and Y2K is what Not to tell them, that in their innocence, they may reveal to others information which you would rather keep private. This is the case especially for younger children who have great ears and may not understand the reason for not repeating what they hear, or overhear. So prudence is also needed for this kind of thing. Also, if you are suddenly storing all kinds of bulky supplies around they will notice - they notice everything, after all - and so it may make sense to take this into consideration as well.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 18, 1999.

If anyones interested, ran into this site a couple months ago. There's an article called "How the Year 2000 Problem Impacts Children." By William M. Ulrich. There's a discussion group also. It's at http://www.dfiy2kkids.html. Aloha!

-- Justin Case (justin case@Aloha.com), April 19, 1999.

I don't have little ones like most of the posters, but it effects my older ones as well. I have a son who will turn 18 right before the millenium. He is supposed to graduate High School in the spring. Today we talked about the draft. He not only has to consider that his dreams of going to college may not materialize because of y2k, but that he might be drafted and sent to wherever President Clinton wants to wag the dog, if y2k is no biggy. It is hard to talk about this with a kid you have brought up to believe in holding dreams and making goals and working hard to achieve them. Kids need to have hope and bright possibilities. This is certainly not the world I had envisioned for him.

My daughter is scheduled to graduate from college in the year 2000. Many of the same concerns apply. In addition, there are, perhaps, possibilities of violence in extreme y2k disruptions, as well as with possible terrorism. How does one prepare a young woman for that?

-- marsh (armstrng@sisqtel.net), April 19, 1999.

Justin Case: Mahalo - I will check it out later today when I have more time.

marsh: I was wondering if someone would bring this up - glad you did. Certainly it seems to me that our older ones, no longer children and perhaps not quite adults, have their own set of challenges coming up in additon to everything else they may be dealing with. It's no secret that these teenage years are a very difficult time for many, a time of transition, which encompasses dreams of the future. To try and answer your question about preparing a young woman (or young man) for various potentialities, I would say that to some extent the background of how they have been raised to date comes into play, and will make it either easier or harder for them individually. It is a hell of a question though. We as parents can continue to lead by example, and try to explain things in terms of choices and related consequences. At least if they are thinking about these choices and the potential consequences, they may be in a position to better deal emotionally and psychologically with what comes there way. As I have posted before, adaptability and flexibility are key. I know this isn't much of an answer, but hope it helps at least a bit, Rob.

-- Rob Michaels (sonofdust@com.net), April 19, 1999.

With 21, 18 year old sons; 14 year-old daughter; and 9 and 4-year old sons, I've got every conceivable explanation situation to face, eh?

Fortunately, having home-schooled for years, that part of the equation is licked. We anticipate the possibility of being of help to the community if there are school-problems next year. We are known to the principal and others and well-respected, plus good friends with the current head of the PTO.

My 21 and 19-year olds are putting some plans on hold (esp. plans that would take them out of the area) until post-Y2K, at least post the first effects (say, thru 1Q 2000). They are GIs (actually, we all are). Their blues-rock-Christian band (Remnant) is beginning to have some serious performance opp'ys, which makes patience challenging. Plus they both work in my business: it's ability to survive a major Y2K "incident" is doubtful, but we're all cool about that.

My 14-year old has enough of a romantic streak that she imagines a bit of "Little House on the Prairie", though not so romantic she doesn't know the kids in town and understand reality (casual drug use at our rural, regional school is as high as most suburbs).

My 9-year old is somewhat frightened by Y2K but quite self-reliant (he's actually our little farmer) and he trusts his parents. As for Gabe, our 4-year old, it's "huh"?

As a family (kids as well as parents), I think we find the lack of integrity in our leaders and the craven amorality of our culture more challenging than preparing for the possibilities of Y2K, which isn't to diminish the darker side of Y2K should that manifest.

IMHO, the best thing we can do for Y2K or ANYTHING is build (or rebuild) strong relationships with our spouse and, of course, our children. The flexibility this gives to meet any of life's situations is key. Home-schooling is another example of this, we credit it with being the day-to-day glue that has kept our family "one".

-- BigDog (BigDog@duffer.com), April 19, 1999.

You know, I've always been a "head for the hills" person. I've always worked in the city (Austin), every day since I was 15, and every day I commute back out to the hills and lake.

Turns out that soccer, swimming, fishing and exploring is assuredly Y2K-ready, so my 7-yr old and myself will continue doing just that, with the neighbor kids.

We also do some community service together; we'll probably be doing more. I don't discuss Y2K with my daughter: she grasps the concept and I'd rather do all the worrying.

If things do go bad, the "walked 10 miles in the snow to school" schtick is gonna be dwarfed, eh?

-- Lisa (lisa@work.now), April 19, 1999.

Right on Big Dog, and I'll be the one to break the Yourdon "taboo" and mention the strong relationship with God. (Hope I didn't wreck anyones day)Also, I don't mean to sound unpatriotic, but anyone here do those 70's San Fransisco peace marches? Remember the bumper sticker that said "What if they gave a war and nobody came?"Aloha, Justin

-- Justin Case (justin case@Aloha.com), April 19, 1999.


-- (praying@home.now), April 20, 1999.

At times I forget past lessons of faith. My favorite analogy is the scene from an Indiana Jones movie as he stepped into the chasm on the faith that there was a bridge invisible to him. (There was.) I cannot allow myself to be paralyzed by fear and doubt or fall apart in hysteria and exhaustion.

It is my job to move forward one small step after another. The outcome is beyond my control. I can only act on my gut feelings and do the best I can by focussing upon the tasks before me and trust that things will be ok. I can get into trouble really fast if I try to handle everything at once or get lost in the enormity of all the issues and possibilities. Focussing only on each small task directly before me brings peace of mind and progress in my preparations.

Sometimes I forget who the father is.

-- justhinkin (justhinkin@mindwelling.com), April 21, 1999.

marsh: I've sure had the same kinds of feelings and worries about Y2K when it comes to kids.

Although mine is only 2.5, I'm pretty close to a number of kids who are older, who live nearby. I talked it over with Justin, who's 13 and if things are bad (like no natural gas for heat) will be living in my house. I told him the story as briefly and sanely as I could and told him the biggest problem wouldn't be the things we could prepare for, it would be the things we couldn't, like people for example wanting our food and us not having enough to give them, then what? "I have a 12 gauge," he says, immediately 'getting it' far better than I want any kid to. I tried to look disapproving of that response, but in my head I was thinking, "natch, don't need to buy that 12 gauge after all."

Regarding hopes and dreams and plans: Sometimes, the future does you a favor by OPENING up possibilities. They may not be obvious, they may not be on the same time schedule as what you had planned. But life as we know it is pretty cut and dried. We have plans and goals and jobs. True, we might rather carry out the plans and goals we have. But that doesn't mean that other things won't arise that won't be even more fascinating, or more challenging even in a good way, or more necessary for our own growth, and then maybe later that first goal will become a possibility again.

I think when it comes to telling people they're going to have reset their goals, one important thing is to sit down and go over what REALLY makes them happy. Playing guitar? Not having to get up early? Having friends around? Etc. Many of the elements which mean the most to people may still be available even in a worst-case scenario.

Plans are hard to give up. The only way to deal with it without too much grief is to look at the elements WITHIN the plans that were most important to us, and see what other ways we can still act on those elements, even if the planned situation doesn't come about for us.

Might work with your oldest ones BigDog. And let me tell you, Y2K might just inspire a renewed interest in music and religion... though I fear the modern instruments may have to be traded in a bit.

Got guitar strings? Now there's a gift for dad I ought to stock up on...

PJ in TX

-- PJ Gaenir (fire@firedocs.com), April 21, 1999.

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