Amazon jungle, being yourself, dreams coming true, evacuated from the Amazon jungle, fear, higher power, Jane Butler, Jane Paffenbarger Butler, joy, parents, piranhas, pirhanas, relationship, trust, weather
Are you tired of hearing about my risk-taking son? His latest news is that he had to be evacuated from a remote lodge in the Amazon jungle. It was for acute food poisoning that had nothing to do with the Amazon lodge and everything to do with the food vendor at the airport in the last civilized city he’d visited. Because he became so dehydrated he could not walk, and therefore had to be transported during a rainforest deluge by everything from a strong man able to carry a 190-pound vomiting ‘boy’, to a luggage wagon, a canoe, a wheelbarrow, and a motorized boat. That was after the local medical expert failed to improve his condition by whacking him across the face repeatedly with banana leaves. A shack of a house in the village they arrived at 2 1/2 hours later held the happy surprise of a medical professional with an antibiotic. Our boy recovered and returned, and the next day was able to join the group to swim with the piranhas. You can hear all about this on his blog.
This is all just preamble to what I really want to say. That is that it has happened in a rather brief period of time that my son has changed from a boy to a man. I judge this by the heck of a time we had with him when he was in high school heading down a path we did not appreciate, just three years ago, to today. Three years ago he challenged us as parents and as people to the point that we took drastic action and held an intervention of sorts to halt him in his risk-taking tracks. To make a long story short we removed all his electronic devices from him for six months, grounded him for a while, told him about our hopes and dreams and love for him, and yanked him over to a path we did like. He has referred to this as the ‘worst days of my life’ more than once. It was not too fun for us either.
Funny thing, just last week during a phone call, he mentioned rather casually how good that all turned out to be in the long run. How it had been the right thing after all, and that we were smart to have done it for him. Yikes! How do we save such moments in life?
I am going to venture to say that his own words were easier to eat than whatever they were serving down there on his way to the jungle last week.