I See you Staring, and It’s Not Okay

Raising a special needs child who’s special needs are not visible can make parenting a challenge. Really that whole sentence is bull crap and the reason I say it is bull crap is because raising a special needs child is challenging regardless of the physical appearance, level of special needs or anything else you want to compare from one special needs child to any other child. Raising children is a challenge. Period. The end.

I am raising three very different children, sure you can pinpoint a similar trait between them all, if you are around them long enough, but overall, at first glance I bet you see that one child … my middle son who happens to be special needs. You do not notice my other two children who are mingling, smiling, laughing and having a grand ole time, you notice that one child of mine who is having a difficult time transitioning from the pool to the car or from the car to the park. You are seeing that child having a hard time and you look at me. You stare. As if I am the worlds worse parent, why? I honestly cannot answer that question. I do not know why you stare.

Clearly you have never had a bad day. Clearly you have never had a difficult time with something. Clearly you simply just do not have much compassion because staring or glaring or even whispering amongst yourselves is what makes you feel good. The thing about your whispers, stares and glares is that you are damn lucky it doesn’t affect my special needs child. My middle child has autism and his difficult times have no boundaries and no limits, meltdowns can be brought on by something minimal like a deviled egg sliding the wrong on his plate to the chair being tilted slightly, to the number of people around him. My middle child has autism and he doesn’t notice a thing that you do, for he doesn’t care. My middle child may be classified as special needs but I consider him lucky, lucky that he will not bare witness to the cruel ways people will look at him when he’s having a hard time. Lucky that, unlike you, he doesn’t give a damn about you, he only cares about himself and what’s going on in his world. You all that stare could take a lesson from my special needs child, because while he was born with some special needs; he is much more than that. My special needs child is the most honest, loyal and devoted child I have ever met.

In other ways, I feel that my son is not lucky. He will form so many close bonds with people who will be cruel and mean to him. My son will suffer some social awkwardness and yes, you will stare then too. You will stare at him as if he has done lost his mind, because after all, the only thing you see is a ‘normal’ young boy, who looks overall healthy, seems fine and has no physical disability or disinformation to his body that screams out ‘special needs’. I feel the pain he doesn’t feel. I have had to learn to be stronger as a parent, because of him. My son’s siblings have learned to be stronger because of him. My son’s siblings have learned to not stare at others differences, nor judge other people for their differences. Because of special needs child with autism, we have learned to have such a deeper level of compassion, patience and love that you, who are staring at my seven year old son … will ever have.

I say to you, those who stare at something that is appearing to be an unruly child, or a mother who doesn’t know how to parent her child, stop staring. Stop glaring. Stop whispering amongst yourselves. If you have a question about my parenting or my son, ask. I would much rather you ask, let me explain or you just stay the hell out of it. Go on with your marry way and not stare. My son wasn’t bothering you by his crying, was he? My son wasn’t bothering you when I had to restrain him as a means to whack him back down to planet Earth, was he? My son did nothing to you, right? Then stop. Have some compassion and maybe, just maybe, instead of staring at me .. lend a hand. Lend me a hug. Reach out to me.

More often than not, I am holding tears back, just below the surface and one wrong transition, one bad move, one every day situation for my autistic son can pretty much put me on the verge of a full meltdown of tears myself. Stop judging others. Stop thinking you are a better parent than me, because I am the last person who would ever say, think or feel that way about you. Ever.

While I hold back how I feel about your stares, I have learned to put that on the back burner, because in that moment all that matters is that I do what has been taught to me to do when my son is having that type of situation. I have been trained on how to handle my son and one of the biggest things that ensure I handle him properly, is to ensure I ignore your stares. I have to suck it up, to be honest, and not worry about that look I can feel you giving me, that burning sensation of your eyeballs glued onto my son and me. I have to ignore it. Meanwhile, I am breaking down inside. I am hurting. I am struggling, because being a parent to a child with special needs is a challenge. Raising kids is a challenge. We all need to have more compassion for others, parenthood is rough stuff people. Love more, judge less. It takes a village.

The end.

 

 

Growing Vegetables, Slightly Later in Season

We have been wanting to have our own garden forever, but we moved into this house a bit late in the season last year and with all that comes with moving, unpacking and settling in, a garden really was last on the totem pole of our to-do list. This year, Spring 2014, however, we knew a garden was a must. Sadly, we did start late in the season, so whether we get any crop or not is uncertain. This is how I started our garden with the little man, my youngest ….

Planting Veggies with Kids

First, I purchased the type of seed starter package that will decompose in the ground, this leads to less issues when transplanting your sprouts of veggies and fruits.

Planting a Garden with Kids

Second, we had to purchase all of the seed packets of veggies and fruits that we wanted to possibly include in our garden. We have pumpkin, watermelon, green beans, peas, and the list goes on. Tip I learned this first time around - start earlier in the season with planting and purchase seeds online, they are cheaper online than in local shops.

Planting Veggies with Kids IMAGE THREE

Third step is to start putting the soil into each compartment of your seed tray. The little one loved doing this with his little shovel. It was a messy job, but that’s why I had the planter on the ground of our dining room floor; easy to sweep up afterward.

Planting Veggies with Kids IMAGE FOUR

The most important step comes now; inserting the seeds into each compartment. Sadly, when you do this with a little one, you may end up with crowded veggies but hey that’s part of having fun in learning. You can always space them out when they sprout up. Little man had fun inserting seeds into each compartment, slightly under the soil.

Planting Veggies with Kids IMAGE FIVE

Last, but certainly not least, you must water with warm water all of the soil with seeds in them. Place this outside or covered in plastic to really get that greenhouse effect. Note: Do not place outside if using this decomposable container or if you are still at risk of a freeze outside.

 

Planting Veggies with Kids IMAGE SIX

Within time, you will start to see your veggies and fruits sprout up. It’s an exciting time watching these grow and it’s also a very fun learning experience for your kids.

 

 

 

{Wordless Wednesday} Let go and Laugh … Outtakes WITH LINKY #ww

Wordless Wednesday Love Outtakes



Our Very Own First Garden

Purchasing this home last year meant it was time to let my daughter’s dream come true, with her very own garden. We went out and bought the seeds, soil and containers to start the seeds in. Yet, we didn’t touch them because of situations that made me uncertain if we would be able to have a garden here this year, but since now all that is settled for now … the little man and I started to plant some seeds.

Planting a Garden With kids

I brought the soil inside and we planted some veggies and fruits. We have a wide range of options and while we did plant a bit late in season, we are hopeful that some of the plants will sprout up in time for us to enjoy them. So far we have Green Beans, Corn, Peas, and some other plants sprouting up.

photo 2(3)

 

photo 1(3)

Sadly I didn’t label the first top picture box of seeds, so I am uncertain what that big thing is that’s growing? That container has onions, carrots, corn and radishes in it, I do believe. The bottom one is all label so I know we have cucumbers, green beans and peas sprouting so far!

Do you do a garden with the kids? Share some tips for us beginners please :)

Please do Not be Two Faced

If I can teach any lesson to my children it’s this; DO NOT be two faced.

Seriously. Just do not do it.

If I catch my kids saying anything about another human being that they won’t say to that person’s face, I swear I will ground them. I have zero tolerance for raising gossip kids nor two faced kids. Never in a million years will I condone such behavior.

It’s mean. It’s wrong. Just do not do it.

I will also teach my kids to be weary of those they consider friends, that tend to gossip or tell them about other people’s lives that are none of their damn business. If these people are telling you personal information about another person, then chances are that they are doing the same damn thing to you!

It’s truth. It’s serious. Just do not do it.

Many will argue that “well I am only telling you because you are my best friend”, do not fall into that trap. Remember which friends you can count on and which you have to filter information to.

I’m being flat out serious. Just do not do it.

Keep your eyes and ears open to those you entrust any details of your life with. I honestly will probably teach my highly self confident kids to test out these “so called” friends by telling them a story and see how quickly others find out. When you are self confident, it won’t matter what word gets around or not, because you are confident about who you are. BUT This test will show who is a real friend and who is not trustworthy.

I am just trying to teach you to beware of those who suck.

What amazes me most of all is when I watch someone, who just not too long ago downed a person for their methods in parenthood, yet sat right down and typed up a piece of parental advice regarding the same scenario that the person was JUST putting down not that long ago. I laughed. BUT my eyes were opened to the fact that some people, especially those are not self confident, will slither around and pretend to be something they are not.

Don’t worry, they mean no harm. They are just broken themselves.

I don’t have hateful feelings towards people who do these things; who like to attempt to wreck havov on ones world, because I am too confident for that, but my eye is on those people because they can be a loose canon and that’s not something you want to have out there running their gums too freely about.

Beware who you trust, I don’t care what the reason is for you to choose to play nice with these people, always protect yourself and your good natured personality first.

And whatever you do, never stoop to their damn level, no matter how tempting it can be to put them in their place of public shame.

That’s all for now, keep your eyes and ears open for those two faced people and please raise your children to be better than that!

Mental Health, Guns and Sadness

Let me be very clear here, I am in no way educated on all of the school shootings that have been happening. I do not know all of the details nor do I know all of the locations that these have happened at; what I do know is that I know enough to form my own general opinion …

Too many of our youth are being killed at gunpoint in a place where they should be safe from such harm. I also would like to say too many of our youth are being harmed sexually in a place where they should be safe from such harm too.

The society we are living in is heading down a crash course to crazy. The news reporters have to cover far too many sad stories of life taken away far too early, there is no need for this. Do I think guns are the problem? Not really. Do I know what the problem is? Not really, no one does for sure.

I have my own opinion on these matters, such as gun shootings in schools, toy guns and pretend gun play when kids pretend their finger is a gun, and I am about to share it. Please mind your manners if you comment, please have respect. I do not disrespect you for your opinions, so I except the same in return from you.

My father is a hunter, the man I dated in high school and into the earlier adult years was a hunter. I have been around many guns in my life, we don’t live in an area where we see them often out at a store, but guns are around here and there, more so during various hunting seasons. I have seen guns since I was a young child. I respect guns. I was taught guns are not toys. I was also taught that toy guns or using my finger as a gun was pretend and for entertainment or play time, never was I confused about toy gun play versus real gun play. Ever.

Once again, I have no clue the back story to these gun shootings at schools, well no back story that goes deep enough for me to form a valid, educational opinion directly about each shooting, my opinion is simply about this backlash, knee jerk reaction society seems to have when a shooting at a school occurs. We are all saddened, we are all hurt, and we want a solution as well as answers, now. Not later, now. I get it, I have kids, I feel the same way, it’s not easy sending your children off to school with this fear becoming a reality for so many families.

I do not think guns are to be blamed for these shootings. I think that a combination of things are to be blamed, yes, but not guns alone. Our right to bear arms is there for a reason, our history matters, what our Four Fathers created for our Constitution happened for a reason. Clearly, there was a reason for we the people to have a right to bear arms, we never will know the events that took place to put this into affect, but we must respect the Constitution, it’s there for a real valid reason; to protect We The People.

5 Thoughts about School Shootings

Here’s where I think our society goes wrong {in no particular order};

  • We lead very fast paced lives, in which we want things now not later, we hate to wait because technology allots us all that we desire immediately at the click of a keyboard button and so we have formed this mindset that things have to happen quickly, as if done within a snap of the finger. No good solution came overnight for any dilemma.
  • Children are raising themselves, and in some cases their siblings too. More and more parents must work in order to keep up the high cost demands of living. This has created a culture of children being left alone far too soon and far too often. Children raising children is never, ever a good idea, because they won’t learn necessary life skills and lessons that parents were meant to teach their youth.
  • Our children are having far too much screen time; i.e. violent video games, violent films and violent/degrading TV shows. Children who are spending an abundant amount of time in front of such violent and degrading electronic games or shows are being desensitized to the real harm in such violence and degrading behavior. Case in point: they confuse fantasy with reality.
  • Mental Health Awareness is not something many are educated enough on, many look to a disability as a physical impairment, but mental disabilities are just as much a cause for concern as a physical disability is {if not more}. Just ask someone who is bipolar how society treats them; as if they can control their own selves, but no they cannot. Many mental health issues are overlooked or not handled with proper medication and therapy, thus placing our society at risk with mentally disabled youth and adults walking our streets every day confused, bitter, depressed and having no where safe to turn.
  • Parents are not spending enough time raising their children, I mean truly raising them. It is our job, as parents, to teach life lessons, to educate them about various weapons they may see in their lives, to teach them about gun safety, to teach them ways to talk about problems, to teach them to open up, to know who they are and to be confident enough to know who to turn to when they are struggling in life for whatever reason. If parents were raising their kids more often, they may be more aware of their child when things start to go negative and thus get them the help that they need.

I certainly cannot point fingers to parents only, and I can’t blame society as a whole no more than I can blame the physical object of a gun on all of these school shootings. I can only share my insight, the thoughts and opinions that have been racing through my head each time I see another school shooting. I always feel sad, for the victims and for the person who felt the need to grab a gun and shoot some people to solve all of their deep emotional scars. Hurting others will never fix you. Hurting others will only hurt more people and most of all, it will hurt yourself because this is a crime with high consequences.

Real guns are real weapons; a tool to use in time of protection of family, protection of self, war and hunting to get meat for the family.

There is nothing wrong with kids playing pretend cops and robbers with pretend guns, they played such games back in the day and no one ever thought to bring a gun into a school and shoot people up, right? So what has changed in society that has made children think it’s okay to do such a thing? Well …. I made my list of why I think children believe that’s the answer, now you should make your own and let’s work together to solve this issue, one step at a time. There is no one answer to this problem, we need a combination of education, awareness and proactive parenting to really get to the bottom of this devastating issue.

 

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