God rest their souls and may He shed His saving grace on their family.
Most of the comments were of that nature - prayers for their family! - and what I noticed was that only one person made the observation that ignorance might have been at play. This is true: two young children are dead, killed during a holiday trip to a wilderness area, and unfortunately these sort of accidents are often seen when people venture outside their comfort zones and do not realize that the assumptions that were sound when they are at home no longer apply. Mountain rivers are not your backyard swimming pool, weather conditions can change suddenly, people may not realize how much more potable water/warm clothing they need to bring, and the animals are not tame.
What I found naive is the comment by the person who answered it with "well-it-can-happen-to-anyone-sweetie." Yes, I suppose it can - but it struck me as a flippant sort of attitude, that we are just flotsam and jetsam (and yes, I am aware of the metaphor under these circumstances) and what happens, well, it's really nobody's fault, because it "can happen to anybody."
And the person proved my point by pointing out, when I took issue with her comment, that the boys' parents did not have anything to be concerned about because the spot they chose to allow the boys to wade into the water was "calm" - in fact, she even remarked that the picture the newspaper printed was "misleading" because it showed the part of the river that was white water. Things are not what they seem in that environment. If you know fast water, white water usually indicates more shallow areas - and lack thereof are generally deeper areas, but the current is still there. You can "see" calm and relate it to what you know - a water park, your backyard pool, a protected beach cove - but the application of formed assumptions may prove to be wrong.
So . . . educate yourself. And sadly, that may mean learning from the mistakes of others. Because the calm water hid a current that swept these boys to their deaths. Very, very sad, and as a parent my heart goes out to the parents - they have a horrific burden to deal with for the rest of their lives. And you can give them compassion . . . and you can learn from them. Give yourself - and your kids - a fighting chance through knowledge.
It got me thinking, too - we try to do the right things to protect our kids, such as swimming lessons, and baby-proofing a home, or making sure they eat their vegetables, but as a Family Law attorney, I can tell you that kids want - really, really want - time with Mom and Dad. So . . . what about ourselves? I often use the metaphor of the oxygen mask that drops from the compartment overhead when an airplane loses compression. You are instructed, if you are traveling with a child, put yours on first . . . because if it is a serious emergency, you're no damn good to your kid if you're unconscious.
|This is both sad and infuriating.|
I had my kids relatively "late" in life - 36 with my eldest and 39 with my youngest. That means I have to put in extra effort to be around for them as they become adults. They will want to spend time with me; they will need me. I know this because I had the same with my parents. Their "problems" now are trivial compared to the ones they will have as adults: God forbid, but foreclosure, job loss, a lump on the breast, an arrest. And if you want to help your kids then, you have to be there.
I know a couple who recently adopted a child, and both are past 40. Hell, they don't talk to me, but I will be truthful, they really ought to be watching their health for the sake of their baby daughter, as both are overweight and the mother is obese (and a nurse, so ignorance is no excuse). Chances are very good that this little girl will be an only child, since they waited so long for the chance to adopt her, and the last thing she needs is to face a future of having to be the sole caretaker to older parents in bad health. Plus a change will mean they can teach her good habits of health. Give her a fighting chance, you know?
I'm in the second half of a century of life (I hope). I want my kids to be honest, ethical, and be able to adapt to circumstances and come out alive . . . and hopefully stronger. And I want them to have fun doing that. The best way I can think of teaching them that is to do it myself. I think I am better qualified now than I was 20 years ago.