What I really want to scream out loud is…nothing. Because in this, I am voiceless. I have no leg to stand on. No laurels to rest on. No experience to back me up. I am rendered irrelevant by my ‘invisible’ status (to those who wish not to listen), and to those who have ears to hear my words, I am but a mirror, parroting back the golden Truth they already know.
If you’re going to be a parent, or open yourself to the possibility of being one, or have it foisted upon you, please, please, please do it well. Get people around you. Get the village. But please do right by your kids.
I am sidelined – unintentionally marginalised and excluded from being able to lay claim to an opinion. I have no right to speak. And yet, as part of the village, I observe. I watch. I see.
I see you out late, screaming and shouting and drinking with your friends in the cold winter, with your toddler in his pushchair.
I see you trying so desperately to change the WHOLE WORLD to turn it into a place where your son is welcomed with open arms, and knows that he belongs there.
I see you swearing at your child and dragging her roughly down the street by her arm.
I see you holding your daughter, realising how much it means that she still wants to hug you, and committing to never letting her go until she’s ready to let you go.
I see your son holding your daughter, promising that he will keep her safe.
I see you panicking that because you didn’t feel like you loved him, he didn’t feel it either, and that you might have failed. (You haven’t.)
I see you unable or unwilling to discipline your child, and her turning into a tyrant, beginning to bully her friends.
I see you giving your absolute ALL to your brood – ferrying, coaching, playing, caring, listening, talking, and when you feel lost, reaching out and trying so hard to understand them, to learn more about their characters so that you can parent them better.
I see him screaming back at you, his face twisted in rage and throwing things, wanting to hurt you, wanting to stop but not knowing how.
I see your heart broken because of his choices, and I see you struggling to overcome, to forgive, to rebuild; because your love is unconditional.
I see her impassive face as she says that you hit her.
I see your pride in their sister-bond which reflects your own, and how much it means that you’ve been able to model this to perfection, in spite of such sorrow.
I see her watchful eyes, unable to believe that the daddy in her friend’s family won’t suddenly turn on them all and ruin the evening.
I see you reading them poetry and stories, and singing them songs, building their imaginations, their worlds, and your bond with them as you share.
I see you ignoring her as her attention-seeking misbehaviour escalates, before rounding on her to call her a “twat”, in public. And mean it.
I see you overcoming your own lethargy and disappointment and dealing with the cooped-up feeling of another snow-day, to make sure that things in their world are positive.
I see you all.
I am the village. And I am speechless.
So I write…
I also wrote part one of a really, properly important piece about growing old. It’s part of Our Land (which I constantly and FOREVER love) and part two is coming next week.
In this I got my writing mojo back. And it has already caused ripples. But I want it to cause WAVES!
BOOOOM! Quick – come and read her!
It’s Friday. I know that you know this, because you’ve just read (at least, I hope you’ve just read) my entry for Finish The Sentence Friday, which would be a dumb thing to have posted if it wasn’t Friday, amirite?
And so, inherently, within the fact of its very FRIDAYNESS, there is sufficient wonder and glory to merit a ‘Quick Take’ all of its own.
Because I NEED it to be Friday, yaknow?
Aaaaaaaaaaaand yeah, just because it’s a romp and it’s FUN, and it’s words and the WriterHeart and all things *twinklysparklysilly* about blogging, I want to share this again – my (first?) guest post over at the ‘home’ of my new BlogWife.
And as an aside, I think it’s wonderful when events in the Blogosphere and fun little silly things in the real world line up, just for a moment, to bring happiness.
But too much, and for all the conversation, the common-sense did not prevail, and the consuming went too far.
Such pain and shaking, such self-berating, and why, oh WHY was this self-inflicted idiocy allowed?
But purging is for those who’re made of stronger stuff…or weaker, for try as I might, I cannot – I remain stuck full, and now shame-full too.
And so I discover that empty is better than full: maintaining a low is easier than the back-and-forth of the destructive cycle, and probably less painful into the bargain.
A lesson learned.