Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The Moon is Made of Cheese


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STORIES FROM CHILDHOOD & BEYOND
Encouraging Advocacy

Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom



When my daughter was around 2 years old, she approached me one day with a wide-eyed expression and whispered, "Mommy, the cow jumped over the moon!"  If we had been reading a book of nursery rhymes I would have expected something like this.  But it was random, out of the blue, unexpected.  But instead of wondering, "What the heck?" I bent down, looked into her eyes, and whispered back with wide-eyed wonder, "And the moon is made of cheese!"





That moment was magical.  She looked back at me and smiled.  It was like our own language cue from that moment forward.  Sometimes as we were driving to pick up her dad from work, we would listen to her favorite tunes. (She seemed to love Queen Latifah's rendition of Spell on You) We often saw the moon in varying stages against the night sky during those trips to pick up dad.  Sometimes one of us would look at each other and say, "The cow jumped over the moon."  That would cue the other to respond in a mysterious spy code, "and the moon is made of cheese."  My daughter loved to draw out the "ee" sound in cheese. "Cheeeeeese."  The fun part of this was that we could take turns initiating this activity.  Even now that she is a teenager, we love to reminisce about those moments.



This week I am missing those simple moments.  They are reminders of how quickly time is passing.  Now we are dealing with so many issues that are more complex than a cow jumping over a moon in her nursery rhymes.  She is learning to become an advocate for herself and others.  She is realizing that those in power and authority are not always the ones who communicate well with others.  She is recognizing that it is important to set your personal boundaries and stand up for what you believe in the face of a patriarchy; one that continues to minimize valid concerns surrounding safety and reduction of risk factors within a school system.   It is exhausting and exasperating!


One Of A Kind Throw Pillows


I am nostalgic for those "the moon is made of cheese" moments.  Today especially, I am spending a few minutes reflecting on how much I have tried to make a difference in so many ways.  Because right now, I am struggling to hold my tongue and be civil when my child needs me to stay calm.  A school would do well to consider that an actively involved and concerned parent is always...and I mean ALWAYS...a better ally, resource, and supporter than a writer mom who has been dismissed, reprimanded, and basically advised to piss off under the guise of a "let us run the program" comment via email. 

I will continue to encourage my teen to speak up for herself and her team mates, communicate her concerns to those in the "chain of command", and document the responses she receives.  I pray that the promised changes occur in a timely manner. I will expect that the serious issues brought to the attention of those in positions of trust will be resolved.  #TheMoonisMadeofCheese #SelfAdvocacy
#WriterMomAdvocate

Special Request

I would greatly appreciate your comments, insights, stories of advocacy, and strategies that you've discovered in helping our children become strong advocates for themselves and others.  You are invited to comment below.


Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom

"Never underestimate the depth of understanding and insight in a teenager
when given the opportunity to be an advocate for the greater good.
Show them the respect and maturity you look for in their actions.
Lead by example, and demonstrate the concern for their well being that is
necessary for them to perform as a member of a team."
~ World of Writer Mom.org







4 comments:

  1. Aw, I love this story and what a sweet memory. It sounds like your daughter is growing up to be a wonderful young lady who can fight for herself, but I imagine it's tough to stay calm as her mom sometimes!

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks so much, Lauren. I love your comments and appreciate that you read my article. It's been a pretty rough week and this made my day. ~ Mary

    ReplyDelete
  3. I know how it feels to have to hold your tongue when you feel your child is being treated unfairly. I have had to do it many times over the past few years. But my daughter has been able to be her own advocate...has respectfully asked me to let her handle things, and I have respectfully complied. Not only is she able to advocate for herself, she is also able to not sweat the small stuff and let things roll off her back. When I see her dealing with thing in a much healthier way than I ever could have at her age, I feel I must have done something right in raising her. At the end of the day, she always knows I have her back though!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for reading and commenting. It helps to know other parents are dealing with these concerns too. I especially relate to your statement that she deals with things in a much healthier way than you did. I feel that way about my daughter too. She has way more confidence and ability to stand up to people. It's taken me years to feel like I can confront and address issues. You are definitely doing a lot right in raising your daughter! I appreciate that you took the time to read and share here. Kindest Wishes, ~ Mary

      Delete

Thank you for visiting WorldofWriterMom.org I appreciate your time and comments. Kindest Wishes, Mary

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Mary Varville-Rodriguez, BSW, Child Development/Early Intervention Specialist/Advocate (15+ years), Prior experiences: AFAA Certified (Frankfurt, Germany) & Global Wellness Certified (Augsburg, Germany) for Personal Trainer/Aerobics Instructor/Exercise Prescription, UTMB at Galveston Dept. of Pediatrics - Project LAUNCH - Community Outreach/Referral Development/EIS-C, Current: World of Writer Mom.org Writer/Publisher/Marketing Affiliate/Advocate