Risk Assessment

Writers’ Trigger:

Pen Women met in Colorado Springs a couple of weeks ago, and Carol Caverly presented a program on creative non-fiction. I’m not sure what triggered the following anecdotes, but a number of women shared sex education stories.

One woman’s story was that sex education was part of the six grade curriculum, and her son Matthew came home from school unnaturally quiet. She asked him if he’d had a bad day at school… what was wrong, etc.,  and Matthew refused to share. Days passed. Matthew had shut down completely. Finally the mother called the teacher, and the teacher revealed the problem. At the conclusion of teaching the class on how babies were made, Matthew asked, “What’s the other way?”

The second anecdote was shared by a Pen Woman who reflected on her pre-teen years. She thought she was quite knowledgeable about sex, but nothing had prepared her for her mother’s becoming pregnant. What a shock to learn that her parents had experienced  sex, not once, but twice! 

  • Sex education, whether in school or out behind the barn, is a great topic.
  • A youngster’s knowledge or misconceptions are all great fodder for story telling.
  • Play with one of these stories or use your personal experience to write a short scene around sex education in the classroom, on the playground, or…


 Some readers might think that it is time to change the banner at the top of my blog. As the sun beats down and the temperature rises to the low 70s, you would think I’d post a spring motif. But Colorado has its heaviest, wettest snows in March and early April. I’m holding my breath. We need the moisture badly.

As for risk-assessment, the title of this blog, our youngest daughter, Sarah Dembosky, underwent upper and lower jaw surgery last Wednesday. She was keen to get to the root of her problem teeth. I was less keen. I’ll post her stunning pictures so you can appreciate the risk.

 Why would I let anyone take a knife to Sarah?

I could be arrested. Family Protective Services could take her away from me.

And I wouldn’t blame them. In the end, Dr. Hull, in whom I had a lot of confidence because he reminded me of my son-in-law in terms of age, education and competency, sliced and spliced. The first few days following surgery, Sarah appeared to have a terminal case of the mumps, and if you looked at her in profile, she had a frog’s double and triple chin. The first few days, she looked a lot like Matt Lucas playing Vickie Pollard. How scary is that!

Vicky Pollard

 It has been a week now, and the swelling and the yellow/green bruising that started at her chin and worked its way down her chest is less. We will have to watch her weight. This week she has lost eight pounds.  Pureed food in a mouth that doesn’t really work does not lend itself to weight gain.

We anticipate a good outcome. I’m glad we took the risk.

About timeout2

I have lived 100 lives. I write essays, short stories, poetry, grocery lists and notes to myself. If I am ever lost, look for a paper trail, but be careful not to trip over any books that lie scattered here and there. I am a reader. I am a reader in awe of writers. When I don't live in Westcliffe, Colorado, I live in London where I am a long-time member of Word-for-Word - Crouch End.
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