May 31, 2009

Three times today, Ry has been seen sitting in the living room with Charlotte's Web propped open on her knee.
She. Is. Really. Getting. It. Now.
She says, "I can almost read this!" I say to myself, Stay Calm.
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Henry and I are reading Kipling together at night. This, then, sent a chill over me:
"Often and often afterwards, the beloved Aunt would ask me why I had never told anyone how I was being treated. Children tell little more than animals, for what comes to them they accept as eternally established." ~Rudyard Kipling

12 comments:

Cecelia (CC) said...

show me the way, unschooling, homeschooling Momma...you show me the way....hooray!!!

Katherine said...

Oh gosh, Cecelia. You know, the kids show you what they need. Right? I don't know more than that.

MOM #1 said...

I love Rudyard Kipling. He's a good one.

Sarah said...

"Often and often afterwards, the beloved Aunt would ask me why I had never told anyone how I was being treated. Children tell little more than animals, for what comes to them they accept as eternally established."

My dad was here last weekend and we got into a discussion about my childhood.

He claimed that he never knew that his kids were starving because we never told him. "Why wouldn't you tell me?", he asked.

"*Because you were my dad*. You were SUPPOSED to know. We figured you DID and just weren't doing anything about it."

Of course, he did know and we did tell him. But to acknowledge the truth, that we were starving and covered in bruises, would be to face many more facts in his life that he could not face, even to protect his children from their mother.

The discussion came about because I mentioned a local family who was having issues similar to my siblings and mine growing up and how hard it was for the siblings to tell anyone - it was what they knew. Until the oldest child was told by his wrestling coach that 3% body fat was beyond unhealthy, the kids had all accepted that that was just their life. So very sad.

Katherine said...

(((Sarah)))

"to acknowledge the truth...would be to face many more facts...that he could not face" Lord, if that's not the truth right there. I see that all the time.

It struck me that children and animals are constantly telling the truth, such that, anyone who cares to notice can see it. And there it is - Caring To Notice.

Are you constantly blown away? You see children and it's clear things aren't right. Let's take serious abuse out of it, for the moment. Just look at children who are plainly not doing well - they are not happy or calm or easy. And no one seems to be seeing. No one is saying, "Why do the children seem unhappy?" In fact, I would say that children are expected to misbehave in ways that look like neglect to me. Your kid is whining and pitching a fit and a total pain in the ass to be around? START PARENTING. If you don't, that's abandonment.

We see how common that is. Doesn't that make it harder to see the more serious abuse? Because children and animals are not communicating verbally. Right? We HAVE to look at posture and behavior. We have to look at attitude. We have to LOOK.

Ugh. ((((Sarah))))

Cecelia (CC) said...

Kat, all I really mean is: when I feel scared that I ought to be doing more for my kids (a constant thought), I feel relieved to see that others (you among them) don't seem to need to worry about that so much. I am reminded that *not* worrying about it is an option I have - and for that I am grateful. Thank you.

Katherine said...

Oh my gosh, CC, I wish you had been around a few years ago when we were all OBSESSING online about how afraid we were that we weren't doing enough for the children, educationally. LIKE, OBSESSED! I'm going to do a blog search on the topic and post links...brb...

Katherine said...

Here's one:
http://ourreportcard.blogspot.com/2007/10/firstly-sometimes-i-get-scared-that-i.html

Katherine said...

This:
http://ourreportcard.blogspot.com/search?q=I+know+the+director+of+the+Guardian+

Katherine said...

And this:
http://ourreportcard.blogspot.com/search?q=What+we%27re+talking+about+is+getting+to+know+fear

Katherine said...

I don't think my links worked. Oh well. The point is, we used to be fearful and then we got over it. For many varied reasons, we just got over it. : )

Sarah said...

"Are you constantly blown away? You see children and it's clear things aren't right. Let's take serious abuse out of it, for the moment. Just look at children who are plainly not doing well - they are not happy or calm or easy. And no one seems to be seeing. No one is saying, "Why do the children seem unhappy?""

Absolutely.

Now when I see kids 'misbehaving' or 'acting out' or being 'brats', my thoughts are *with* the children, not *about* them.

Most parents are hurriedly (and sometimes in any way they feel is necessary) trying to get their kids to quit embarrassing them instead of asking why their kid is acting that way or if things wouldn't have escalated if they had only stepped in a few moments sooner or if they had actually been parenting instead of chatting with family. Not that that situation happens at our family get-togethers. Constantly.