Posts Tagged ‘parenting’

Kids, Bullies and Life

While my 3 children were growing up, I tried very hard to instill in them the ‘Golden Rule’ – treat others the way you wish to be treated. But as we all know, kids can be extrordinarily cruel people. I’ve often wondered why this is – what the purpose and cause of bullies is. I still remember the kids making fun of me back in elementary school. I was afraid of storms, I had excema and would scratch of my tan in the summertime leaving white spots, and my last name was Brown. I was a prime target! Schools nowadays have implemented anti-bullying curriculum, but I don’t think there will ever be an end of bullies. I think they grow up into adult bullies – you know the people you have to work with that are intent on making your life at work miserable. I wonder if they were schoolyard bullies?

My oldest son, Jason, experienced bullying in 6th grade and I truly do think that it was a pivital chapter in his life. I was actually working on the campus, transcribing and putting together books for every student in the school. What a fun project – I still have my kids’ three books. They were put in a real hard cover book and they got to personalize their cover. I knew he was being picked on and I had many conversations with the teacher. He was an older gentleman in his 60’s, so I felt that he was addressing the issue. I kept in touch and talked to Jason about it. About two weeks before school was out, the stuff hit the fan. There was an incident with another male student and I was ready to pull Jason out and forget the last couple of weeks of school. I called a meeting with the principle and the teacher. During the meeting, I was astounded to hear the teacher proclaim “it’s just a chain, part of growing up. The stronger pick on the weaker, and then they pick on someone else. He just needs to lift weights and bulk up”. The principle hopefully had some choice words for the teacher after the meeting, I hope. I could have cried – I felt I had let Jason down. Obviously the bullying had continued on, even though I had addressed it with the teacher.

The effects were almost immediate – he changed the way he looked and his attitude changed from passive to ‘no one’s going to hurt me anymore’. He started skateboarding, wanted an earring, colored hair dye – a total transformation. He was going into middle school, so I went along. At 21, he still has the attitude that people aren’t going to hurt him anymore, more of a cold personality, even though his heart is big and soft, not many people get to see that side of him anymore. Truly sad and if I could go back and fix it I could, but we can’t. We have to move on…

The Baby Years

I had a successful career, as an Administrative Assistant at MeraBank when I married my husband. Not long thereafter, I became pregnant. We were 30 when we got married, so there wasn’t any time to waste! Since we were able to live on my husband’s salary, I quit working when I was a few month’s pregnant. I was greatly looking forward to the break – after all, I had been working full-time since the age of 17. I was very grateful to be able to make this choice to stay home and raise my child. Little did I know that the grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence.

Along Came Jason

The first-born was Jason, now 21 years of age and living back at home :-(.  My husband was working 6 12 hours days for the first year and a half of his life, and he was working nights when my water broke.  I called my  mother to drive me downtown to St. Joseph’s Hospital.  She was going about 45 miles an hours down the freeway, when I proclaimed “step on it mom!”.  I was almost 4 weeks ahead of my due date and let’s just say it was not an easy birth, almost ending in a Cesarian because the cord was wrapped around his neck.  It’s not fun having drugs pumped into you to make your contractions stronger (are they kidding?) and 2 nurses laying on your stomach trying to pop the kid out.  Poor guy, he was probably saying “gees, just leave me in here will ya!”.  We both survived the trauma and he had to spend 3 days in the hospital in the NICU before he could come home.  He was a skinny baby, due to being born early, and is still a skinny guy.  I’ll always wonder if it is because of his premature birth.  We’ll see what happens when he gets older and mother nature starts playing her old age tricks!

Isolation

While I was so looking forward to staying home and raising Jason, I had no idea of the sense of isolation I would feel.  It was 1989, before the age of cell phones and internet.  There was no place to go to meetup with moms with babies to hang out and have some one-on-one conversation.  Thank God for my mother – she was always there to go places with me and support me in this new, scary adventure.  Those who have not given birth and raised a child have no idea what a challenging job this is – more challenging than any CEO’s job out there!  Mommies in this age have a great resource in the internet – meetup.com has loads of groups, you can get on the internet and search people out, chat with people on the other side of the earth.  They surely do not feel as isolated as I did.  When I would go to McDonalds with my mom, I would see other moms with babies and would just want to go up to them and say “Would you be my friend please?  I need a little female conversation”. 

Am I glad that I stayed home and raised my three children – absolutely!  Was it more difficult than I envisioned it to be when it all started out – absolutely times 10.  Mommies are heroes!  Until tomorrow – thanks for reading…

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