Monday, July 9, 2012

The Edge of the Knife

The King found his nights troubled by distressing dreams. He found himself high above a deep chasm, and he had to stay balanced, standing on the edge of a long blade which traversed the chasm. Staying balanced took extreme effort and concentration; should he lean too far to either side, left or right, he would plunge to his doom. Yet he had to cross, walking on the edge of the knife.

After many nights of lost sleep, he took his concerns to the Queen.

"Do you think these dreams concern our youngest prince?"

"Yes, I do."

"Think back... Visualize the chasm, what do you see?"

The King closed his eyes and concentrated.

"On my left... Deep down at the bottom... I see all the work we've done. Every treatment, every therapy, every exercise..." He paused, then concentrated some more.

"On my right, is everything we haven't done... Other families in our situation seem to do more, and maybe they need to. So far the Lightning Kid is doing excellently... Is it because of the work we've done, or the times we've just relaxed and been a family? Is it the Lightning Kid's own innate strength that is keeping him on the straight and narrow? Is it just luck? If we don't know and can't tell the difference, how do we keep this up?"

The King slumped his shoulders under the weight of it all. The Queen reminded him:

"Everything in life is like that; too much of just about anything is bad... All parents have to strike a balance between lenient fun and structured discipline, between spending time with family and putting food on the table. Not just families walk the edge of the knife, but perhaps they worry more about it for their children's sake... the stakes are so much higher."

"That is true... All we can do is continue as we have been, follow our instincts and most importantly love our children. It's just..."

"I know... the edge of the knife hurts my feet too."