A more serious post from Mumabulous today. My father was a Special Ed teacher for most of his adult life. He specialized in working with kids who were both mentally retarded and emotionally disturbed – a losing combination if ever there was one. Dad’s former professional life would have made excellent blog fodder. He would come home daily with anecdotes to make you laugh, cry, puke and everything in between. Now that I’m a mother this story is particularly resonant.
A group of his primary school students were having a whinge fest. They were having a one upmanship contest about the inconveniences their mothers imposed upon them. “My Mum wont let me stay up and watch TV” moaned one. “My Mum only lets me have an hour of computer time” chipped in another. “Well my Mum makes me eat peas” yet another whined in disgust. One little boy was becoming visibly agitated the longer this litany of complaints went on. Finally he slammed his fist down hard upon his desk and shouted ” Just shut up! I’m sick of this bullshit! At least your mothers care about you. My Mum never cared about me”.
Unfortunately this child’s mother was a heroin addict and was too caught up in the ravages of her illness to care about him. He had dragged himself up in an environment of utter neglect. On hearing this, I wanted to scoop the young boy up in my arms and invite him to come and live with me. I would care for him. He’d be a young man in his twenties now and I’ve no idea what became of him. I can only hope that it was something good as he deserved it. For a boy who was supposedly mentally challenged he displayed a lot of wisdom that day.
Sometimes he drifts into my thoughts as I hug and kiss my girls or walk to the park with them in sunshine. His message cuts through all the white noise of the media’s so called “Mummy wars” and I’m thankful to him for teaching me the most important thing about parenting. You’ll never get this gig 100% right 100% of the time but if you care and show it you’ll never be a bad parent.
Mumabulous will be back to her fluffy, frivolous self next time.