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Location: United Kingdom

Yes...this is ALL about me, and mine. Marvellously self indulgent, feel free to tell me how splendid I am, leave comments, nice ones please, I have little kids and teenagers who can do the rude stuff. I am a grandma, to the glorious Joshua, I'm allowed to look frazzled and weary, I earned it. The older I get, the more I see that hanging on and being patient is worth it! They ( whoever 'they' are) are so right when they say you never know what is around the corner, it isn't always an articulated truck! It is vital to make the time for making memories, friends are the greatest treasure, I love mine. I am rich!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Tears before bedtime.

Today was a dreadful day. The last day of the school holidays, sun was shining, I got up and thought that we should make the most of the day and take the boys out.
Dressed and ready for an adventure, we left in the car and headed out for the day, Seth complained all the way about how long it was taking and where were we going, he is like chinese torture on most days if he isn't in control.
We arrived in beautiful Brixham, where there is a for real pirate ship, parking was hard to find and we ended up in a car park 15 minutes from the town centre, by the time we reached the harbour, I was ready to throw all 3 of them in and feed them to the seagulls and crabs....I am at a loss as to why these boys behave so poorly, I sometimes wonder if maybe I am too hard and expect too much, if I nag or say no too often. Last time we went out I was feeling as though I made a mistake using such nice names as Seth, Isaac and Eli and should have gone with OI! YOU! and RIGHT! Just as I was at my wits end and thinking that the sound of my voice must be grating on every other beach go-ers nerves, a lady sitting next to us said " You are SO patient!"
I was flabbergasted, PATIENT?? How so...well it would seem that most of my ranting and screaming is done inside my head, and in reality I don't actually say out loud things like " So help me if you little shites don't start behaving like human beings, I am going to tear you limb from limb and buy a kitten!" I say things like " Stop what you are doing and think please, do you suppose this lady likes having sand thrown in her face?"
Instead of " OI! Pack it in you little buggers!!"
I say " Listen, if you do that again, and know that this is the last time I will say this, we are going home"
Who'd have thought?
Well, today was one of those days and I do know that on our way into the town center I did lower my voice a few times and warn, with as much meaning as I could muster, that bad behaviour would not be tolerated. For all the good it did me or anyone else in Brixham. ( and that would be NO good, at all, not an ounce, none at all, just so you know.)
They had crisps and a chocolate chip cookie, I had a chicken sub from subway ( oh so delicious, sweet onion sauce and low fat at that!) As we sat and ate, a family walked past with a little boy in a wheelchair, he was terribly disabled and hunched over, his tongue was protruding and he was on the receiving end of many stares. As he got level with us, Seth pointed and said, very loudly
"What was THAT?"

Yes. He did... and then Isaac laughed.

I froze for a millisecond and then I made them cry, I made them cry again when we got home and I made them cry again when I told H what had happened. I wish I had had the presence of mind to run after the family, to talk to them and ask them about their boy, to ask what he loved and what his name was and then to ask them in front of the boys if heir son had ever said or done anything in his whole life to make another person cry. Had he ever done anything to another human being that resulted in them, as parents, being so ashamed that they cried?
I would lay money on what the reply would have been.
I made them aware that this boy was some one's precious son, that he was loved and perfect that what they had said and done today would stay with that family for a long time, that their day out had been spoiled by their thoughtless actions and words.
I pointed out that we have disabilities in our family, that we have known how sad it is to have people point and laugh.
Then we went home, without my speaking to them again, at all.
We drove home and I told them that it will be a good while before I feel like taking them anywhere again. I think they got it.
It's hard to know what Seth gets as far as feelings go. He cried more than the others but I'm not sure if it was shame or just the fact that I wouldn't let it drop.
When we got home, I showed him a video that DID get a message across because it is about basketball, which always hits home. When they had watched the video ( thanks Marilyn for emailing it to me) I explained that no matter what someone looks like, what they are ale or unable to do, whether they can speak, hear, see , walk, play. There is not a person born that is not worthy of being loved and given the respect they are due.

I have cried a lot today, I just pray that these boys have learned a good lesson, that it wasn't all for nothing.



Blogger Cathy said...

Well, you made me cry!
You are such a wonderful mum and a loving human being!
I'm so blessed to call you a friend.

I love you!

5:44 pm  
Blogger Michelle-Ann said...

Helen,hun, you are a great Mom, I have zero doubt. Kids can be cruel sometimes. I don't think they even realize it until we as adults have to point it out, unfortunatly it is something of this nature that we have to use as a learning experiment. All will be good. They are lucky to have a mom that cares enough to teach them these things!!!

6:24 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

Thanks a lot for that video, Helen! As if I needed anything besides the hormones to make me teary!

You did a great thing today, and I know your boys will remember it. Well done.

6:43 pm  
Blogger Jenn said...

Hello - were you spying on us this past weekend?
I think I could almost copy and paste your post about my little ingrates and how I SO feel like you do - far too many times.
I do not feel patient - I feel grouchy and yes, I feel sad that I try to make these wonderful memories that so easily get spoiled by a sullen child hell bent on not enjoying anything because he hasn't gotten his own way about absolutly everything from morning till evening. I love you Helen. I learn from you, and I laugh with you, and yes I cry with you. I'd blog about my weekend, but quite frankly I'm too tired at the moment....(maybe later though - nothing like a good teaser eh?)

9:50 pm  
Blogger Julie Q said...

A great lesson you taught them today Helen.

I remember when that game happened. It was on the Today show. A great story. :) Very heartwarming, the way the crowd and his team mates cheered him on.

11:33 pm  
Blogger Robin said...

damn, you made me cry too! i work with people with disabilties so it wasn't his disability that made me was the total acceptance and support from his peers. that's a beautiful thing.

your boys will get it one day. they have a good teacher.

3:27 am  

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