One mind split two ways. That is the problem!
My wife asks, “Should we get our baby girl’s ears pierced?”
As a dad, a male of the species, I do not take much interest in the question because I see it as a mom problem.
But my wife points out that in Japan it is considered child abuse to get a baby girl’s ears pierced where as in America it is OK after the baby has received the proper shots after turning three-months-old.
My Japanese wife, who is a type A personality with go-against-the-grain sensibilities, is torn. She would like to get our baby girl pierced but after all she is Japanese and it’s just not done in Japan.
Social norms hold together the fabric that is the Japanese society. Even she dares not to take this matter lightly.
So, she consults me. Initially I am indifferent but more I think about it more I become uncertain about the question.
Then I say to myself, “When in Rome…We’re in America and my wife is in favor of getting the piercing done. So why not?”
With our minds made up, we go to the local mall to get our baby girl pierced.
The store employee readies everything, including the piercing tool. At this point I am unable to stomach what’s about to happen to my little baby girl.
As I walk away, a scene from the movie Braveheart is playing in my head, where Mel Gibson is tortured in a classic medieval fashion. Oh, how the same fate awaits my baby girl!
No wonder the Japanese think this is child abuse.
My attempt to leave the scene is thwarted when my wife asks for my assistance in holding our baby daughter’s head steady.
With two quick piercings and a loud wail, it’s all over. The cry subsides within 10 minutes. No big deal.
A couple of months later, as I write this blog, I look at my baby daughter and her cute piercings with satisfaction.
One mind split two ways. That is how my children will grow up: two conscientiousness, one American, one Japanese, that will persist their living being. They will be as bewildered as I am by the similarities and differences found on both sides of the Pacific.
But follow the golden rule, “When in Rome…” Then you will be all right most often than not. If you don’t like Rome, go to Greece.