Jul 20, 2012
One school day, I reached down into my kid’s book bag and pulled our a triangular scrap of paper. I asked what’s this. Oh something I wrote. And I asked him to read it to me. I was more than blown away.
This is the translation.
Black vs. White
“Ya’ ready?” said White. ”Yeah!” said Black.
“Cloud!” said White. “Mist!” said Black.
They both fainted. “Nobody won!” said the announcer.
When I asked him about the story, he said this, “I like that nobody won, he said. It’s fair. And I don’t want to make White look bad. Or Black.” Out of the mouth of babes.
I love my kid and I love the world I live in. I read this and it makes me hope that our children will make the brave choices. They will choose to not make the differences of people or cultures or opinions a personal problem they need to avenge. And they will look further than themselves and their bank accounts to the greater world beyond them and make choices that embody compassion and integrity. And make a living doing so.
Our children are our hope. And will learn as we do. You can screw the small stuff up but the big stuff is what we choose to courageously stand for every day. Start by not buying stuff sold by people who are evil or not local if you can help it. Or take your kid to the voting booth with you. Or just stop playing the parent role and be a respectful equal to them for a little while. Ask them what they value and what they want to do about it. The empowerment and self-esteem of our children will rescue us from our present world predicament.
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May 12, 2012
And so, on the eve the extravaganza that is Mommy’s Day, I felt the need to speak. (Which is the same as every day but here we are enjoying this post together). Spent the day with my Mom and son. Did my laundry, dishes, waffle making, gardening, and mothering the boy through whatever attitude he’d mustered for me today with his father missing from the boundriatic equation. I’ve been told I make it all look easy and that’s why I get taken advantage of by all the members of the household. The son, the father, and the stunt surrogate daughter.
So I got to thinking, what does it mean to me to be a Mom? Because, as much as I wanted this, I never really knew what it meant or why it was as good as it ended up being. And then I remembered the following post from last summer
“Hi, I’m Julie my son’s cruise director for the summer’s Love Boat. As my son’s summer scheduler, I made sure that he had the kick ass summer he should have before first grade. Legendary? Yes. He got to experience all the ego boosting activities kids are supposed to experience.
Recap. We spent a week at the beach making sand castles and daring waves to dump us. He learned to swim and put his head under water in the last hour there. He went fishin’ and watched two fireworks displays. He has a front tooth with an official wiggle. The boy learned to ride a bike well. He’s begun to read because he’s compelled by his curiosity. He mastered Foosball and all sorts of stuff on Wee Sport Resort. He kissed a girl at Y camp. He performed onstage, rode a pony, and spent a week programming computer characters. And he had his own special day in the middle of August. Come on. If that doesn’t sound like the best summer for a six-year-old, then someone’s an overachiever besides me.
We are their mirrors and the masters of their destinies in many ways. I couldn’t have done any better by him. And I don’t need him to be anything more than happy. Happiness is a gift you give yourself…through your child’s esteem.”
I celebrate myself and my child growing me up and keeping me honest If I’m not at my best, he knows. He can sense my wobbly esteem and he adopts it as his own. So I just signed him up for the two-day camps for the summer of ’12. But Super Mama needs time for herself too. R and R my way, taking care of my needs, and staying present for my life and health and happiness will guarantee a “we all live happily ever after mother’s day” ending.
PS. I lost my surrogate child yesterday to her boyfriend’s abode. When she turned 21, she was already gone .We’ll see you soon dear girl. I’ve got empty nest , sandwich generation , 7-year-old boy syndrome, and temporary single parenthood cooking at once. Buy me a drink sailor?
May 6, 2012
Why is it instilled in my brain, as in many others’, that it’s not OK to ask for help? You’re supposed to tough it out. Don’t show you don’t know. There’s all sorts of shame in that game. There have been many occasions when I needed help but didn’t ask for it. And had I known I was worth the asking, life may have been easier at those times.
Last week, I empowered my 7-year-old kid to ask for the help he needed. So distraught before a little league game, he broke down sobbing about his fear to go up and bat. There were too many voices in his head he said Those of the well-meaning Dads (including his own) and coaches telling him how to stand and hold the bat and swing. I’ve pitched a tennis ball to him. I knew he could actually make contact more than half the time.
So I said, “You have to go to your game because you’re part of a team and they’re counting on you. I can make sure you have a chance to ask your coach to help you. That’s his job.” I was making all of this up but it sounded pretty good to me. Later, at the park on our way to the dug out , a mean little teammate said to my kid, “You better get a hit today”. He didn’t see me standing there. When I caught his eye, I said, “Nice way to support your teammate, kid.” It was the coach’s step son. My kid didn’t flinch.
Sometimes we need to just hear ourselves ask for help. Or hear ourselves say, “You can’t treat me like that”. When we hear ourselves standing up for us, respecting ourselves, we say, “Hey, I’m worth it”. We need to believe in our own worth and prove it to ourselves. The alternative is to prove we aren’t worth it and say nothing. When we say “it’s not worth it”, we really say we aren’t worth it.
At the next game, my husband called the coach over and my kid asked the coach for help. And he was glad to oblige, relieved I’d venture. and pitched to him before the game. The more the boy’s out on that field, the more he belongs. Of course he bats last, but he’s getting the hang of the whole thing. And the last game, he got three singles. He feels entitled to the support of the team and the coach. Shouldn’t we all have that feeling ?
Apr 24, 2012
I really wanted to just get on with some normality yesterday and today. After all the drama, I wanted some same old. No “thought thought” I told the husband.
So yesterday, I made granola, pita chips, and brown rice. I ironed mainly long sleeve shirts Mark just put into the deep storage closet today. I labeled and sorted my clothing to help make me feel more ready for the unknown days and weather to come.
Unfortunately, I also balanced the checkbook. I discovered, as if I didn’t know, we’re still in a financial sink hole after the taxes got paid. I feel sick to not be contributing monetarily. Except I keep our heads above water and our credit scores clean. I had put aside the school pictures order for the next check to come in. But then I realized yesterday was picture day. I began to curse and had to run a check up to the school. The son got pulled out of class to get his picture taken and then go to recess. It better be a good picture.
I kept thinking, what would I be doing to make money that wouldn’t take me away too much? I used to be a valuable money-making member of society. Now, recently, I had to prove to the powers that be and decide, I was actually a real member of America’s in-crowd.
Back to normal. Today, I went for a run. I haven’t done that in a couple of weeks. I did all the laundry and folded it and put it away. I went out in the backyard with my kid and made an effort to boost his esteem by having him prove to himself he could hit a tennis ball with his bat. He got a hold of a couple. The unloaded dishes and made the dinner. My exhaustion says I contributed.
We stay at home moms have a hard time valuing our contributions. We feel powerless to make the money but we manage it. We provide all comforts and services that make the home not just a house. I thought that if we all actually carried as much weight of the world as we think we do, the world would then weigh nearly nothing.
I want to blame myself somehow for not having healthcare or savings. For not being a financial wizard. But that’s ridiculous. So I have requested some research into folding some business debt into larger loans and hopefully empowering me to feel less like a loser mommy and more like a winner Mommy. When I feel good, the boy feels good. I got a little of myself and my confidence back today. But I feel I’ve a ways to go.
Aug 26, 2011
Say goodbye to kindergarten, here comes first grade. We already knew Mr. Green’s bus would come at 8:25. It’s still peanut butter and jelly for lunch every day. Except for Friday when it’s pizza day. I was freed to spend all day doing whatever I wanted to. I decorated and created and dyed my hair and caulked and went to the gym and sanded chairs. And when Eamon got home, he didn’t have that edge that he had last year that I felt I had to coddle and worry over.Yes he was hungry but his sense of humor was still intact. He wanted to return immediately to school and do it all over again, bless his heart. He’s big now, soon to be even bigger.