To be the Queen of Chaos, you have to be a little warped.

Posts tagged ‘family’

How To Make Parents Worship You (Especially If Their Kids Have Special Needs)

Everybody’s got a cause these days, myself included.  We all want people to see the importance of the things we believe in; we all want to change the world.  Most people are well-intentioned when they spread their message.

Let’s face it though – the reality is that people generally “get it”, or they don’t.  A lifetime spent trying to get everyone under the sun to agree with you is probably a waste of time.  When I write out my opinions here, I’m sharing them with the hope that I might offer a new viewpoint for an open-minded person to mull over.  It’s up to them to decide what to do with the information.

People are largely unresponsive to complaining.  It becomes tedious to read, too, so that’s not what I want to spend much time doing with this blog.  I’m also not suggesting that I have any authority over others’ choices – free will is a wonderful thing, despite its occasional misuse.

That being said, in this post I’m offering up some suggestions anyone can do to endear themselves to a parent like me.

1. When in doubt, discreetly ask me what is permitted or acceptable for my child before offering it.  Few things are trickier to handle than, for example, a child with a milk allergy who’s just been offered ice cream.

2.  If my child spends time at your home, consider ways you can make them feel welcome.  That might mean relocating some collectibles, closing off certain rooms, or locking the backyard gate.  You are under no obligation to do this, of course, but I AM under obligation to keep my child safe and out of trouble.

3. Remember that parenting advice is almost NEVER welcome unless it is specifically asked for.  Allow me to deal with my child’s routines and discipline without interference unless you are asked for help.  Sometimes it is more complex than it appears.

4. Ask me how best to interact with my child.  Learn their likes and dislikes, and be accepting of what they can and cannot do, even if it seems like they “should” be able to do Task X by their age.

5. Understand that my child cannot always perform for your entertainment.  Hugs and kisses on command, posing for pictures, or demonstrating new skills may be more stressful for my child than you’d imagine.

6. Life is not a contest.  Nothing good can come from comparing your misfortunes with mine, measuring my child against another, or trying to categorize how “easy” or “hard” anyone has it.  This isn’t a race, it’s a journey – there is no grand prize at the finish line.

7. Believe that my whole family is doing the best we can.  My husband and I are trying our best to be good parents, my kids are trying their best to be well-behaved and responsible, and my child with developmental delays is doing her best to navigate a world that doesn’t always “speak her language”.   Focus on our accomplishments more than our shortcomings.

Bears

Mess with my cubs and you mess with ME.

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Forgive And Forget You

I’ve been ruminating on the concept of forgiveness recently.  Forgiveness has been tossed around in the media a lot lately, especially with the amended definition arguing that forgiveness is not permitting others to hurt you without consequence, but rather permitting yourself to let go of your anger at the perpetrator and use that energy in a more constructive way.

I went to a charity fundraiser performance by a medium the other night.  Among many fascinating concepts that were introduced to me that evening was the idea that, from the “other side”, there is complete forgiveness in all relationships, because of the spiritual understanding that our souls are gifted with after passing; there’s a sense of “none of that matters now”.

I normally consider myself a person who forgives easily.  Minor transgressions by someone who normally brings positive things to my life are usually forgiven within a few days.  I am, however, atrocious at forgetting.  For reasons I have yet to understand and often wish I could change, my brain holds on to every moment of hurt, humiliation, and pain that I have ever experienced.  Upsetting grade school memories can return to me in a nanosecond.  Harsh words spoken out of passionate fury echo across my mind forever.  Sometimes my inability to forget impedes my ability to forgive.

I’m having trouble accepting that as a character flaw.

It’s very rarely the hurtful action itself that lingers within me when I have trouble forgiving someone.  It’s the unspoken meaning behind the act – “I am more important than you.  My feelings, my wants, my needs, my comfort, my safety, my convenience, my reputation, my body, my mind, my heart… it all matters more than you do.”

I mean, jeez, how could that not damage a person?  How can people not carry that burden with them, or have it creep up on them unexpectedly when they thought it had been left behind?

For the most part, those in my life whom I haven’t forgiven have also not apologized or really taken ownership of their misdeed.  At the end of the day, though, I don’t really care if their actions were misguided accidents or if they were just being straight up assholes.  The reason (excuse?) doesn’t undo the damage.

So as it stands today, there are a few hurts I can’t forget, and, therefore, a few people I can’t forgive.    I wish it were possible – it would certainly be easier.  But do I spend hours obsessively grumbling about them?  Not usually.  I don’t feel as though I waste much emotion or time on them.  It’s sort of like a stubborn old wound or a trick knee – most of the time, it doesn’t bother you, but here and there something sets it off and it pains you for a while until it gets regulated again.

I don’t think that makes me petty or unenlightened.  In fact, it serves me well sometimes, because it reminds me that my choices have consequences, and it sometimes helps me to step back and address problems calmly and reasonably.  I hope it makes me a good role model for my kids.  Hurting people, especially intentionally and callously, is wrong.

I hope they never forget that.

It Was Only A Matter Of Time

So, yeah… I finally went ahead and created a blog.  I admit, I didn’t really understand the blogging thing at first.  Who would want to, essentially, read my diary?  And why would I need anyone to read it anyway?

However, having written a few things for other online writing forums recently, I now realize that there is a kind of therapy involved in writing stuff out and throwing it wide for all to see.  These days, I am NOT one to refuse free therapy!  Hence, here I am.

A few tidbits of info for you to consider before you read:

My biggest passion is kids and family, especially my own (obviously).  You’ll hear a lot about them, but because I am a huge proponent of protecting children’s privacy online and allowing them to choose their own level of internet exposure when they are old enough, it will be under the conditions of anonymity.  My husband and I are, effectively, the King and Queen of our household, and we have three princesses.  Being the Disney addict that I am, we’ll call them Belle (9), Ariel (7), and Jasmine (almost 2).

I’ve always been dedicated to children, having worked with them my entire adult life in various forms, and I’m fiercely insistent that society serve the best interests of kids with typical and special needs.  I hate it when money, politics, and numbers games mess with the well-being of our children.

I’m opinionated about self-image and body image issues, particularly as they affect young girls.  I’ll probably spout off my thoughts about health (physical and mental), weight, pop culture, politics, etc. as it relates to those subjects.

Also, I swear more in print than I do in real life, mostly because no one will overhear me and choose to share it with their entire class the next day.

Lastly, be warned – I am not a technically savvy person, so I will probably screw this up a lot.

Welcome – sweep the toys off the couch and have a seat.  I’ll see if I have enough coffee to make a pot.  Don’t be an asshole and make me go looking for artificial sweetener.   🙂