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Posts Tagged ‘random thoughts’

I went to a ‘workshop’ last night entitled “Play is the Way” hosted by a gentleman with great enthusiasm for his job and passionate
about his programme.

Basically the premise was that “Children do not fail, systems, programmes, teachers & parents fail, children do not fail”.

I agree entirely with this premise, but what a wake up.

Everything I do, everything I say, in some way, shape or form, manifests itself in my children and either enables them to succeed or results in their failure.

Like I didn’t already place an enormous amount of stress on myself as a parent and the influence I am having on my children!

It’s important to note though, and for me the reason why I enjoy these types of ‘workshops’, nothing he said, nothing he ‘touted’  new.  It’s simply that we have forgotten these simple truths through constant marketing demanding that our jobs as parents is not to raise well adjusted adults but to have a happy child.

Through constant marketing we have been made to feel that if my child is not happy, right here, right now, I have somehow failed that child and become less than that perfect parent I want to be.

When did we begin to assume that parenting was a perfect occupation?

Why do we expect so much of ourselves when all our child asks for is love?

Who do we model ourselves on and when parenting with a partner how do you align two different histories into one coherent parenting practise?

When do we require our children to be more?

When do we say “enough, you work it out for yourself?”

Whilst my children are relatively still young, it is the complaint of “the younger generation”, the “generation Y’s” that suggests to me that we are yet to make this demand of the up and coming, the people that I hope will lead the way, in technology, in kindness, in environmental responsibility, yet, if I am to believe the workshop last night (which I do), it is not their fault.

The system, education, you & I failed them and in doing so failed ourselves.

One statement he made still reverberates in my mind, and eases some of my guilt.  He said, “100-80 years ago we all had 10-12 children so didn’t have the time for poor old Jack/John/Lucy, we simply told him/her to deal with it, get over it, which they
did”.

Do I, do we, have the courage to demand more of our children, in order for them to be all it is they can be?

Can I let them go long enough for them to be truly happy…….free?

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I am not the adventurous type.

Never have been.

I’ve always done my best to avoid anything remotely “scary”, show rides, jumping off things or pretty much anything that involves me getting out of my comfort zone.

I hate heights.  That is anything that involves going down from a height.  Going up, great.  Standing, looking out over a horizon at a huge height, amazing.  Having to physically descend, bloody scary.  I even refused to go into a temple at Angkor Wat, THE temple to go into, just because I knew sooner or later I’d have to climb down.

Generally I don’t trust myself to get myself out of a tricky situation, and whilst I’m being honest, hate the thought that people will see me as inadequate in my attempts, so I play it safe by not attempting.

I attempted, tried, and succeeded last weekend.

I climbed, waded through water, scaled rocks, pushed myself even though I really just wanted to stop. “Here is fine thanks, this will do…..you keep going”.  It was so worth it.  To get through it, with my husband and two boys was amazing and I’m ridiculously  proud of myself knowing I could have quit at any point.

Thanks to my wonderful boys that gave me the courage to not wimp out.

We made it!

At the entrance to Kermit pool

The way we’d come

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So here I am, hand sewing a handmade (see extremely dodgy) cloth sign onto my 6 years olds shirt to get him ready for a fancy dress day at school, when between pricking my fingers with the needle I have a little laugh and think “if only 20 something me could see me now”.

Actually, and to be honest it is probably a good thing she/me can’t as this certainly isn’t something I thought I’d ever “sign” up for, but, somehow, I think it is the best decision, or non-decision, I’ve ever made.

I never wanted children, a husband, to be a stay at home mum, live in the burbs (or a country town as it turns out now), I never thought I’d wake up and spend the rest of my day looking after, caring for, providing, nurturing someone else, but here I am.

And I wouldn’t for the 30 something life of me be anywhere else.

His Zac Power shirt (Zac Power label by me over a Billabong label), spy phone, stink bomb, ID Card, Lanard card and GIB timing devise

And because I’m soo chuffed at my work…………another view

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So I got some “legal” type papers in the mail the other day, you know the ones where you have to fill everything out in block letters, black ink only, filled out under the light on a waning moon.
 
To complete it to the companies satisfaction the form also requires that two people witness my signature.
 
Big deal really…..except I hardly know two people yet in my new home town let alone two people who I would feel comfortable asking to witness my signature.
 
So why do I have to know these people, surely I can just go to a police station or the local doctors/pharmacists to get a witness, only that would be admitting my solitude and make me feel even more pathetic than I already do.
 
So why can’t I ask the few friendly, nice, lovely people who I have become acquaintances with?  Why does it feel so odd to ask them?  I know they would, it’s not like they are signing away their first-born, just witnessing my crazy piece of scribble on a page.  Why does it make me feel odd?  A loner?  A bit of a sad case?  A Nigel No Mates.
 
Maybe by reaching out and asking for such a simple thing, people will realise how isolated you can be as the new face in town, maybe remind them of what it was like and encourage them to reach out?
 
Or maybe, like me, they’ll just find me a little bit sad.

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Just for today I want to

Not have to think about what I’m having for dinner the second I wake up so I can get something out of the freezer.

Not make my bed, and especially not make the kids beds, like they care how their bed looks anyhow.

Not do the laundry, so I don’t have to worry about hanging it up, bringing it in, folding it, putting it away…..

Not do the dishes, again, and then again and just for laughs, again.

Not worry that I should really be putting that water from the saucepan I just boiled an egg in into another container so it can cool and be used to later water the plants with.

Not worry about makeup, I’m tired and drawn out and quite honestly sick of pretending otherwise.

Just for today I want to hide, be anything another than a mother who needs to pull her socks up, put on a happy face and show an interest in every pretend monster or little game they play.

Just for today I want to wallow, be still.  See no one.  Do nothing except maybe sigh at the mundaneness of it all.

Just be.  Just for today.

I’ll pull my socks up tomorrow.

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That’s how I’d describe my friends reaction at someones suggestion that her son might have Asperger’s.

She was so completely shocked, still is, the idea had never occurred to her and who was this woman to make such an assumption (the school psychologist as it turns out, not necessary an expert in the field).

I on the other hand was completely shocked that she was shocked, surely all the signs were as clear as day, how could he be anything but someone with Asperger’s.

Then she asked “why can’t he just be the smart kid who is a bit awkward with his friends” and I immediately feel guilty.

Why do we have to label people, kids in particular.  When I was growing up he would have been referred to as ‘the brainiac’, ‘a nerd’, ‘that weird kid’.  Today he has asperger’s or sits somewhere on the autistic spectrum, not just somewhere to the left of centre but somewhere where as a society we can box him, collate him and put him aside to analyse later on.

Granted the idea of ‘labelling’ does have benefits in allowing access to programmes or funding designed to help both the “sufferer” and their family, but it’s the desire to ‘label’ that has my friend worried.

That and the unknown.

Hopefully by doing some research she’ll learn that asperger’s can actually be a gift, some of the brightest minds of our past and present would all comfortably sit somewhere on an autistic spectrum, or have “aspy’s” as I’ve heard it so casually refered to.

But I now ask myself, (still in disbelief that she appeared to have her head so deeply buried in the sand), what is it I don’t see that is so plainly obvious to others.

And do I, blinded by either lack of knowledge or fear or even just plain ignorance, want to see it, or would being told be like getting my head yanked out the sand to the oncoming glare of headlight

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