Monthly Archives: March 2013

Mom-spirational Guest Post

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Earlier today I had a discussion with Mom-spirational. I read her most recent blog and asked her if it would be okay that I post on my blog as a guest post. I was moved by her honesty and her insight into herself to admit her faults, and her decision to make them right.

 I think we have all judged someone without all of the facts at least once in our lives.  

 Guest Post- Mom-spirational

                      Her Blog 

 

Please go check out her blog and get to know her better.

 

Special Needs Child Meets “Me” The Asshole

I hope that most of you will read beyond the title, before berating me for what I realize now was discrimination against a special needs child. 
This is a story about awakening, about being re-acquainted with my value for each and every human – regardless (and sometimes despite) their behavior.  But mostly, this is a tale of understanding.  About never forgetting.

As humans – we tend to find fault or anger or make false judgment against things we don’t understand. That doesn’t make it right, or valuable.  We cannot just go around saying, “Well, I didn’t know all that,” and then find comfort in our belief systems that anyone who is different is not ‘right.’  And we certainly cannot expect to know each and every childs (persons) story – or think we have a right to knowing their story, before we can excuse or accept them for who they are.
I make no excuses for myself, except for sheer ignorance.  I tend to believe that I am an extremely understanding individual, and have tried to teach my kids that there are all sorts of people in this world and that we have to try to accept them all.

When it comes to the human beings that land on this planet, I do not believe there are any mistakes.  They are ALL here, WE are all HERE for a reason.  There is not ONE singular exception to this rule…. 

I am bit embarrassed to admit however, that I too – have unknowingly discriminated against a special needs child.  Not outwardly of course, but inwardly – within the confines of my mind and in conversations with my young daughter.

There is a particular child in my daughters kindergarten class who seems to be constantly out of sync.  On the multiple times that I have visited the classroom, all I notice is his bizarre and impulsive behavior and his lack of self-control.  My daughter comes home every day and tells me yet another story about this ‘little boy in her class’ who has once again, done ‘such and such.’
I always tell her shaking my head with disgust, “Well just stay away from him,” or “Maybe there is something wrong with him.”

I have told her that there are just some kids in this world that aren’t disciplined, and that have problems and that some kids just act badly at school.  Bad.  Badly.  (Words that I am ashamed to admit I used about a 6-year-old boy).  Rotten bananas are bad, not kids.
And yes, I will shamefully admit that I have felt sorry for his parents, have wondered what was wrong with his mother and father – and been curious about what atrocious things must be going in his home for him to act so strangely at school.  And, YES, I will further admit that I have felt resentment that this one child has taken up so much time in the conventional classroom, time away from the kids who did fit into the perfect mold of kindergarten academia.

Here’s the thing.  I didn’t know one thing about this boy.  Not one.  Just his name.  And yet I saw him as a ‘threat’ a ‘detriment’ and a person that “normal” kids should not have to deal with on a daily basis.  Yes, I did just write that sentence.  And yes, I feel like a complete and total asshole for admitting that here on a public blog. 
 
One of my all time favorite Facebook Pages/Blog is The Crumb Diaries.  I look forward to her posts everyday about her son Logan, who is a special needs teen.  I know all about indigo children (as I have one of my own), and I have fallen in love with Logan and his mother (they have no idea who I am) by reading her daily posts about life with Logan.  I have grown to see him as not special needs, but simply special. 

When I was young I wanted to be a writer AND a special needs teacher? 
I have always been able to pick out the kids in this world with a broken wing and extend my hand and my heart openly to give them wings.  So what the hell was wrong with me?  When did I become such a bitch? 

In a short conversation with someone who knew this child well and knew HIS story  I was swallowed whole with guilt and remorse for my feelings toward a child.  A child!   A fewllow human being.  I was guilty for words that I used to describe him without knowing HIS story.  Here I am writing a blog segment called Stories of Us on this blog, and yet I was forgetting that even children have stories that don’t necessarily read like an open book.  They are thrown into this world of standards and rules and when they don’t seem to fit into the puzzle – they are discarded or judged.

Had I really stepped so far off my moral and spiritual road to think that my thoughts were EVER okay?  Apparently, I had.  And apparently the Universe was going to remind me that although my kids may ‘look and act perfect’ on the outside – human perfection and love comes in all different wrappers.

Here’s what I didn’t know.  (Not that it should matter)
But, this boy was found in a dog crate at the age of 18 months while living with his drug addicted mothers home.  He had never had anything to eat at that point in his life – except a bottle.  He spoke not a word.  There’s more to the story that I wont share now, but you can rest assured that he is now in a loving and healthy home.

Here he was 4 1/2 years later, a handsome and healthy young boy with some developmental delays and some emotional problems.  I skimmed the playground to find him and saw him hugging a classmate.  When he accidentally got bark in another child’s face, he ran to the teacher to immediately confess and get a hug.  In fact, he hugged his teacher many times during that short 30 minutes.
There wasnt a ‘mean’ or ‘bad’ bone in this childs body and his heart, when I was really looking at HIM, not his differences – was as honest and pure as crystal.  C.R.Y.S.T.A.L!  And perhaps that is exactly what made him different.

As we walked back to class, me still reeling from my own guilt and horror – I stood back to walk with him as he seemed distracted following the line of students headed back to the building.  He accepted me as a friend without apprehension or shyness.  I looked into his eyes and wondered if he was ever held as a baby,  ever rocked to sleep.  There aren’t words to describe the despair I felt for him.  I grabbed his hand, and he told me – a perfect stranger – that he loved me.  And I think that he meant it.

I think that he really meant it, as tingles shuttered through my body as if I had just touched an angel. I knew I didn’t deserve to be loved in that moment, especially by him – a perfectly beautiful child, who I had written off as a ‘bad egg’ so to speak. 
 
Our teachers come in all shapes and forms.  This day, my teacher, my messenger from the Universe was a small boy with warm hands and a big heart that I may have missed out on seeing due to my own close-mindedness.

I have never once considered myself close minded until this moment in my life.
The truth is, I shouldn’t have had to learn his story to be accepting.  That is our responsibility from the get go, to accept others.

No one has a responsibility to share with us the reasons, or diagnoses, or unexplained history, or medical definitions of why anyone is the way they are.  We (I) cannot walk around this world with a box to compartmentalize people by shape, size, or color as if we are all Legos. 

Sure, we are all one small part of a bigger plan – a larger picture, a massive and tall Lego tower, where each of us has a place to belong – but none of us have any right to make decisions about where that place is.  Not ever.

In the end, it was me with the special need – not this little boy.  And I am grateful, that he was there to teach me, to put me back on the path of real human acceptance and love.

Bad Moms

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Fun Fact Friday revealed more than one mother admitting she worries she isn’t a good mom.

Ladies…Really?? The fact that you worry about that in itself says you care enough about your child, that you probably are a good mom. We ALL worry at times. I know I do. I know I always have, the worries have just changed over time.

At 18 bringing home my daughter I worried about keeping her alive! I worried I wouldn’t know what to do, or pick up on her signals when she needed something. As she got older I worried I wouldn’t be able to provide everything I wanted for her…then what about college? A wedding? Would I teach her everything she needed to know to live a good life?

With Logan I felt more comfortable bringing him home, but then worried about a whole different set of issues when he got a bit older. Could I teach him? Would I be able to fight for him? Not miss anything? How the hell am I going to do this??

Truthfully, I probably haven’t been the ideal, perfect mom- but in reality, I have been a great mom for MY kids, and things have fallen into place. Yes, it took effort, and changes and sacrifices, but most parents are willing to make those for their child.

You might miss a night out with friends to attend an award ceremony. You might miss sleeping late for soccer practice. You might sacrifice a clean dining room table for a science project.

These are the things our kids will remember. Not your perfection.

                                                                  THIS is a bad mom..

So, you don’t always make them brush their teeth. Maybe you could have pushed harder on homework or studying. Your teenager doesn’t have the cell phone she wants. You couldn’t afford to take them on vacation this year. You forgot your sons favorite cereal…These are not a huge deal in the long run.

We, as parents, beat ourselves up. We compare ourselves to our peers, and our kids to theirs. It’s not fair to ourselves.

No matter what your situation- if you have your child’s well being at the top of your priority list, and that child knows he is loved, you are a good mom.

Who Are You?

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Who are you?
 
 
 
Well. Now Slice of Humble (her blog), Adventures of NinjaMama (her blog) and The Plucky Procrastinator (her blog) ALL tagged me in this Who are you blog so enough dragging my feet and getting on with it!!
 
 
1. Where were you born? Born & raised in Massachusetts
 
2. Were you named after someone? No, but my mother took the spelling from June Allyson the actress.
 
3. How many children do you have? 2
 

 4. How many pets do you have? A barn cat, Delaney. 3 dogs, Jack, Crickett & Boo. A bull, Moo Montana.

 

 
 
 
5. Your worst injury? Left arm broken 3 times, ankle, torn achilles tendon, stitches
 
6. Do you have a special talent? Painting is my favorite hobby
 


7. Favorite thing to bake? Have to be honest, baking and cooking are not my specialty.

8. Favorite fast food? McDonald’s french fries

9. Would you bungee jump? No way in hell

10. What is the first thing you notice about people? How they treat others. If they are snarky, judgemental and rude they are not someone I want to know.

11. When was the last time you cried? Last week during Donna Day, more than once.

12. Any current worries? Typically I am extremely laid back and don’t worry about much, but one thing that always weighs heavily on me is Logan’s future. My husband and I work very hard to make sure he’s going to be okay.

13. Name 3 drinks you drink regularly. Coffee, water. That’s it…maybe some crystal light or beer here and there but not regularly.

14. What’s your favorite book? I used to have a book going constantly, now I don’t have as much time, but I do admit- I read all of the Twilight books, the Hunger Games books and the first 50 Shades of Grey (hated that). I’m reading some random novel right now, not that into it. I can’t name a favorite.

15. Would you like to be a pirate? I am a part time pirate.

16. Favorite smells? So easy. Laundry just washed with Gain & bleach.

17. Why do you blog? I blog to vent, I like to write. I have had a bit of writers block lately though.

18. What song do you want played at your funeral? Bagpipes

19. What is your favorite thing about yourself? Probably my height. If I were 5′ tall I would be obese. I get to weigh more but its stretched out.

20. Favorite hobby? See #6

21. Name something you’ve done, you never thought you would do? Become a mom people admire. I started this journey as a clueless teen mother, I never imagined someday I’d be here, having gone through all that I have with Logan. To get messages saying I give people hope for their own child’s future, or that someone reads what I write and has a different outlook blows my mind.

22. What do you look for in a friend? Understanding and trust

23. Favorite fun things to do? Figure out ways to repurpose old stuff. Love taking something discarded and making it worth something

24. Pet Peeves? People who judge you when they have no clue what you’re about

25. What’s the last thing that made you laugh? Logan being a typical teen jerk this morning. I LOVE IT.

Now tag some bloggers to pass along this quiz to!

Scarred for Life
Its Cool To Be OCD
Fodder 4 Fathers