Sunday, May 13, 2012

"The Conflict" (from a 12-year-old's perspective in the form of a Mother's Day poem)

J's Mother's Day card, with this poem hand-written inside, was waiting for me when I woke up this morning:

Why We Have Mother's Day

Have you ever wished to be
Anywhere except with me?
Do you wish you'd take a chance
On a year-long trip to France?

Have you ever wished one day
That you could quit and walk away?
For some days there's just too much
Of things you need to do and such.

And it must drive you up the wall
When people say you've no work at all!
You might even want to pack and go
To places you don't even know.

So that is why we have this day,
To stop you from going away.
For if you did, I couldn't say...
Have a Happy Mother's Day!


  1. PsychMom Nova Scotia...

    Nice poem. And so true....99 percent of parenting is showing up. And staying.

  2. Hi PsychMom! How are things with you?

    Thanks for the comment. Yes, it's a nice poem, but I confess I found it just the tiniest bit disturbing. It's as if she expects me not to show up...or stay.

  3. From PsychMom
    I know what you mean; I felt the tug on my heart too. In my worst moments of frustration as a parent I may have said something about wanting to run away at some point....never meaning it but very exasperated at the moment. And my kid never forgets those comments. If I had gotten that poem, I'd have mixed feelings too.

    I have so many worries about my parenting but then I remember the very least that I provide...consistency, stability, comfortable shelter, food and lots of love, and I give myself a break. It could be worse for her.

    I was wondering, in Ontario schools, is declining enrolment an issue that ever comes up? It's a huge issue out here; sometimes it feels like Nova Scotia is becoming a retirement village. They are closing schools all over the province and putting more kids into mega schools and class sizes are huge as a result. That's one of the reasons we are in private school. I haven't heard that Ontario has that problem, but I thought I'd ask.

  4. "then I remember . . . that I provide...consistency, stability, comfortable shelter, food and lots of love, and I give myself a break. It could be worse for her."

    Wise words. I try to think this way, too. Most of the time I succeed. I've also threatened to leave, in moments of frustration. And I invariably say I'm going to Paris. Hence J's line about "a year-long trip to France." (I've never threatened to leave for that long!)

    As for declining enrollment in Ontario, yes, it is an issue, and there have been school closings (and talk about more to come). So far the closings have not affected my daughters. That said, their class this year (grade 7) has 32 kids--how much worse can it get? I have found, though, that class size is not the determining factor in whether or not they have a good year. It's all about the teacher.

  5. PsychMom says,

    And that's the tragedy of much of it hinges on the personality of a single individual. And a child's whole year can be very painful and pointless if the teacher is not happy or good at being a teacher.

    When I was in elementary is the 60's, we had class sizes like that too. Five rows , 5 and 6 per row, sometimes more. There was never much hoopla about it..not like now. For all but one year, I had really marvelous teachers...the off year the teacher was trying hard to get pregnant but I guess she kept having either she had morning sickness or she was depressed or off work. I couldn't handle the inconsistency, so as my mother said, it was a bad year..I don't recall much of it.

    For my daughter I think it's been mostly OK....I don't always like the teacher, but I don't think the kids have felt the same way.
    But don't you think it should have more in healthcare. You can get health professionals who have terrible bedside manners but the treatment one usually gets is sound and gets you better...generally. Can we say the same about education?