Archive for parenting

For the Parents of the World

Dear parents,

Your child is a special snowflake.  I know that.  I know that there is no other child in the world with  your child’s unique combination of charm, intelligence, wit, good looks, and superhuman abilities to save mankind (saving them from what is still being determined).  I also know that there is no other child in the world with such wonderful parents.  Believe me, I know this.  You’ve told me this in not so many words multiple times. I fully submit that I don’t know how to do my job and  your recommendations are very important to my well being.  Thank you.

But see, here’s the deal.  Nobody’s perfect.  Believe me, I’m pretty much as close as they come (my mom told me so) and even I spilled my drink on the car mat the other day and managed to forget a VERY IMPORTANT appointment.  And also, your child has flaws too.  Now, hold on.  Drop the pitchfork for a minute and listen.  See, your kid has been doing some things in class.  Your child’s grades have also been dropping.  Woah!  Messenger.  MESSENGER!

Here’s the deal.  I called  you.  You know, so you could talk to your kid (because my talking isn’t working).  So your kid could stop the downward spiral and start living up to potential.  Special snowflake, you know.  And again, I just really want to thank you for suggesting things to fix his behavior.  Because, you know, my Master’s degree plus years of practical experience really just didn’t prepare me for the drama of dealing with children.  I mean, who KNEW that was a job requirement?  People really should be more clear about these things.  So, thank you so much for helping me figure out how to better accommodate your sweet, precious child.

I have a suggestion.  See, when a teacher calls to let you know The Nasties have possessed your child and rendered said child powerless to say no (because, we all know it’s not really their fault), then call the exorcist, cook up a batch of chicken soup, schedule an appointment with the doctor, schedule a rescuscitative trip to the Bahamas, really do ANYTHING.  Anything, that is, except tell the teacher off for “not calling sooner” (what was I supposed to do?  Call before there was a problem?).  Anything, that is, except suggest I try “moving your child’s seat” (I know, I know, all the other kids in the class are lousy, no good influences.  Which means no matter where I move them, it will be the same story.  Also, I already tried that).  Anything, that is, except saying that you want to reserve judgment until your precious little buttercup-pansy-pumpkin gets home and tells you their side of the story (well, I mean, this is actually totally fair.  Your child has no motivation to lie and I do).

I’m so sorry to disrupt your day and waste your time with my trivial, inexperienced, silly little complaints.  Please go ahead and schedule that meeting with the principal.  I undoubtedly deserve to be reprimanded for not seeing your daffodil as the unique gift to humankind that they are.  Believe me, I can see how very unimportant I am in comparison.  I get that now.  It was totally crazy of me to think otherwise.  Sorry again.  Resume pitchforking; I clearly deserve it.

Sincerely,

Snowflake’s Past, Present, and Future Teachers

UPDATE:  Parents, did you not get the memo?  I’m very concerned!!  Parents should never try such drastic measures as stopping their child’s allowance.  SPECIAL SNOWFLAKE!!!  This poor child 25 year old had to go to all the trouble of suing his parents because they clearly didn’t see him for the sweet innocent that he was.  The judge clearly didn’t see it either, although at least he required that the boy man be given some money.

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Passion

I might have had a little extra wine with dinner tonight.  Just some disclosure.  Still, that does not reduce the veracity of what I am about to say.  I had a professor in college my freshman year who taught the course “Science, Religion, and Reality.”  I took it hoping to connect my religious indoctrination with the scientific world (something I’d always had trouble reconciling) and instead wound up an Agnostic.  Yeah, it was a hard year but I wound up much happier and well adjusted for all the mental exercise.  My professor, one Patrick Derr, was the embodiment of the philosophical stereotype.  A lot introspective, focused on questions instead of answers, and a significant amount of boozy.  He used to bring a mug of coffee with him to each class which, halfway through the semester we discovered he liked to supplement with vodka.  Namely, the homemade vodka he had received as a wedding present when his daughter married a Polish man.

Back to me.  I had several goblets of wine tonight (what, I was making Coq au Vin and who wouldn’t imbibe when there was an open bottle of wine in front of them?).  Then, I ate dinner.  Then, I went on a long after dinner walk with Mr. Cookie during which he was much colder than I.

This year, if I can get my act together and if Mr. C can get a job, is the year we will probably start trying for kids (oof.  Or more likely kid).  Today, I had a very happy day of problem solving involving power tools and hand saws at the work day for the show I am currently stage managing.  Power tools make me feel like I have a purpose in life.  I had forgotten that until this show.  At one point, one of the actors who was helping me asked how I had gotten so good with building shit and I was really happy to tell him about my background as a Tech Theatre/English double major.  Everyone knows about the English crap, because I teach it.  But, let’s face it.  This year has been shit.  I’m exhausted.  These kids (I feel like) require a lot more energy and focus than past years and in some way it feels like my first year all over again (okay, not true.  Nothing will be as frustrating as my first year).  So, it felt really good to have someone be impressed by my prowess.

Back to the walk (damn.  If my students wrote with such crap transitions I would mark them own.  Oh, who am I kidding?  Most of my kids don’t float in the heaven of the grape).  I was talking to the Mister and randomly starting spewing about how I hope that no matter what, I want our kids to find their  passion.  I want them to find the one thing that makes them happy and fulfilled as long as it doesn’t  hurt society.  I never want to be the person who holds my kids back.  I want them to feel the same joy and excitement I felt today while wielding that circ saw and in giving directions to the two actors building the flat for the thrust.  That shit felt fucking validating, you know?

Yeah.  I hope you know.  I hope that all of you know what I’m talking about.  I hope all of you have something that gives you that rush, that intense joy, that feeling of belonging.  Because that’s why I’m supporting my husband in the decision to quit his job.  That’s why I know that one day when  he’s 60 years old he won’t leave because he’s not happy and feels unfulfilled.  Oh, heck yes.  Heck yes.  Find your passion, bloggy followers.  And don’t ever let it go.

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Not My Style

I have to start by apologizing for the long absence.  It started by waiting for the Alaska pictures to be edited.  Then, it continued with the sending of said pictures to Mac Purgatory thanks to an OS update that was not compatible with an old version of Aperture (to which the pictures had already been uploaded and promptly deleted from the camera).  They’re still there, waiting somewhere hidden in the computer, mocking us and just completely inaccessible until we buy the software update.  Of course,  then the dry spell continued when life got crazy hectic and I went a week barely seeing my own husband, let alone having time to update a blog.  I know, excuses, excuses.  Thanks for sticking with us (and you have, you really have!) and waiting patiently for a new update.  So, without further ado, here is a (non-Alaska) update.

I was walking out of the school today when I heard an adult yelling at a little kid.  She finished the one sided conversation by telling the child to “go get [her] coffee.”  It got me thinking about parenting styles and things that I think I will or won’t do.  I don’t want to pass judgment on those I disagree with, because I don’t know their particular situations.  They might have good reasoning for what they do and far be it from me to say I’m the only person who is ever right (because I’m not.  I’m really not.  Ask my husband but not my mom because she loves me too much and will lie through her teeth about my perfection).

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