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Archive for the ‘Edumacation’ Category

I think we are going to be okay. Read right until the last line. “You have no further authority here.”

Sweeter words have never been heard…..

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful commited individuals can change the world; indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.”  ~Margaret Mead

Mara ~ so true, so true

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http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/adoption-agencys-bankruptcy-devastates-families/article1217223/

Mara – no mei mei for squirt…

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I love doing therapeutic foster care. Even when I feel like I want to pull out my hair with three teenage boys visiting the house, I love it. Sometimes though the minutae slips away and I am angry at people and the damage they have done to their children. Angry. And I know we all have demons and some parents have lived impossible lives themselves. And I’m usually good at living in the moment, and dealing with whatever comes up. And it’s just not my job to judge. Still, sometimes I feel angry.

Children should never have legs broken by their parents, or be so severely neglected that their developmental delays may never be overcome.  And drugs and alcohol and all the following ramifications. And abuse of all types, and neglect, and pain and hurt. And an education system that treats kids like they need special ed, or a medical profession that medicates everything, in the exact same way. And the stigma of foster care. It’s really too much.

And the kids? They’re awesome. They really are. Resilient and strong and broken and amazing. Really. You should all be in awe. And humbled.  And I want to pick up the broken pieces and tape it all up until it’s good as new.  But I can’t. I’ll help though. And my house is here when foster parents need a little break, and my house is safe. It’s not much of a house, but there is food and laughter. And a Wii.

So hug your kids if you have them. And know that we are part of many families in our lives and biology isn’t everything….  It’s a huge part of who you are and where you came from but it’s not everything.

And love? It is the most amazing thing. We have an infinite capacity.

Mara ~ whose ‘kids’ are giving her more than she could ever give them.

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Go see this article.

 Try to read through the comments (it’s tough, believe me!)

And let’s chat, shall we?

Mara

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Trust me, it hurts. A lot. Like swallowing a thousand razor blades in a mouthful of drool, and it leaves you choking and a little panicked by it all. So anyway, tons of meds and some AWESOME, GODSENT mouthwash, and I have moved beyond the insanity and the creeping anxiety everytime I felt the need to swallow. It made me freak out a little when the walk-in doctor asked if the doctors in the emergency department had even looked in my mouth the previous day….  Hmmm thanks emerg!

Now onto a subject that is just exhausting me! And I’m white! And privileged in ways I am sure I have not yet acknowledged! And I’m heterosexual! And I’m middle class! Did I mention I am white? And I live in Canada!  

 ENOUGH with the slant eye gesture! Es tu Miley? Es tu Miley?

mileycyrusasianmockingppw7

Now I could start the whole southern-God-fearing-trailerpark-cousin-marrying-idiot-parent analogies, but  that would be uncalled for. And I would only gain a moment of satisfaction until the self-loathing would creep in. So I rise above.

So, it’s the racist ‘chink eye’ gesture again. Dude, my Chinese daughter does not need to see that shit from a Disney Billion Dollar Empire. And can I once again say how incredibly sick I am of the non-apology? (See here).  And that poor Asian guy in the picture, just coming to realize that his friends are a bunch of racists. Sigh.  

Miley says her actions were taken out of context. I have a tidy little sum running on whether she knows what that actually means. All she has to do is provide said context. And poor Miley, she was just trying to make ‘goofy faces’. Because, you know, those asians are really goofy looking. How can she be expected to control herself?  And the kicker is that she can’t believe SHE is being targetted for being a racist when God has a plan for her and the evil media are just trying to get hits on their websites or copies of trashmags sold, and her fans know her heart, and she’s really just a young, silly girl. Wow. It sucks to be the victim doesn’t it Miley? Because of course how could some slant eye ever understand anything about being marginalized, being discriminated against or having to watch some un-taught child do the equivalent of calling you the n-word? Because that gesture is exactly the same thing. The. Exact.Same.Thing.  And please don’t argue, because as a whitey you (and me) do NOT get to tell people of colour what is and is not racist. You just don’t.

And now I’d like to hate-on so called allies. You know who you are. You are the white parents of children of colour who don’t want your children to see racism behind every tree. You don’t want your child to run away with a ‘victimhood’ mentality, or to be ‘oversensitive’, or to walk around being constantly ‘offended’.  You say you’ll be there ‘if’ they encounter racism. IF?!  What you are teaching them is that YOU are insensitive! YOU are sending them the message that being one of ‘those’ people is not desirable. Of course your child never mentions anything about being the victim of racism…. because you, the parents, are racist. And the zipper is stuck on your white privilege bag. And it’s hard, but you have to be willing to learn, to unpack and do better. Your children deserve it. The gesture is not in good fun, the gesture perpetuates the beliefs of a racist society. If you are not Asian you do not know what it’s like to be Asian. If you are not adopted, you will never know how it feels to be adopted. These are not things we should teach our children to let ‘roll off their backs’. We need our children to know that we know it’s wrong and we will not let them navigate through a racist world without us having their back. And working actively to dismantle a power structure that refuses to fundamentally acknowledge and accept our children. Our children of colour. Yes, sometimes I hate my fellow adoptive parents. We can be so fucking clueless.

And once again the way to apologize is to say “I’m sorry. I’ll do better” and then sit down and shut up. A little hint in case you are having trouble formulating an apology, never, ever use the word “if”. Never.

Mara ~ I think I’m back 🙂

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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/27859660/

“To save adopted girl, California couple gives her up.”

Please read this article. Especially if you have adopted internationally or are in the process. Adoptive parents need to stop looking at solely filling their own desires and go into things with eyes wide open. We are not entitled to children. We are especially not entitled to other people’s children. Our desire to grow our family should never come at the expense of an ethical practice. And don’t dismiss this as just a problem unique to Guatemala. IT. IS. NOT.

I believe ethical international adoptions can and do occur. I also know that our privilege remains mostly unexamined and without a real understanding of the complexities of adoption we are doing a disservice to our children. We need to do more than acknowledge loss, we need to fight corruption and unethical practices. This is an adoptive parent’s responsibility. We need to actively fight against it. To not do so dimishes us all. Demand transparency, question your agency, look under the surface. Maybe see if you are able to change a request from an AYAP female? Maybe stop complaining about the wait for referral (and I sympathize with those waiting, I’ve been there/am there too) and consciously choose to err on the side of caution and let checks and balances play out? Maybe let your joy at referral be tempered a bit by the reality of a mother unable to care for her child and making a decision we could never imagine?  Realize that love in and of itself is not enough. It’s just not.

I want to look my daughter in the eye one day and tell her not only about my love for her, but about my love for her first family. I want her to know she was not a commodity, she was not “purchased” to fill my void. And I did not look the other way.  I will not look the other way.

Mara ~ off my dusty soapbox, sorry!

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Dear neighbour gentleman,

Please be assured that when The Guy passed your truck on the highway it was not a personal affront. No offense was intended and we are very sorry. And please be advised it is not okay to pull your vehicle into our driveway in a fit of pique to yell about aforementioned Guy’s unforgivable driver error. It is especially not okay to ever physically accost anyone. Also? It is totally not cool to scream IN FRONT OF A TERRIFIED FOUR YEAR OLD. Ever. And didn’t your mother ever teach you that it is not polite to point? As was mentioned, The Guy would be happy to talk to you about your concerns in private re: his irresponsible driving. And when someone asks you to stop yelling in front of a child who has NEVER been exposed to such barbaric behaviour, please respect the request and dissist from continuing your tirade. Your loud, obnoxious tirade. Also? After you repeatedly ignore very respectful requests to lower your voice and to STEP OFF, please realize that it comes to the point where we feel a bit threatened and we have no choice other than to mention the police.  Please leave our property when we respectfully (without raising voices even!) ask or we feel we must protect ourselves and call the police to have you removed.

Also? Please look out for advertisements for assistance in dealing with road rage issues. I feel they may be of great benefit to you. And taking a deep breath and counting to ten can avoid much neighbourhood discord and awkwardness.  Please also remember that kindness is often a better choice as you just never know what battles we could be fighting inside. Would you have acted the same way if you knew that the Guy’s mom was missing and we had just found out? Would you have terrified my daughter if you knew your actions would result in days of anxious questions from a sensitive little girl? Questions like why did that man yell? I do NOT like that man! Where does that man live? Is that angry man coming here again? How do you suggest I comfort her? And please realize that I wanted to shield her from the harsh realities of the world a little longer, because her life has not always been all sunshine and roses and she feels loss deeply.  And she has suffered great loss.  And all the work I do to try to make her feel safe and loved and cherished can all too easily slip away when she sees the scary stuff that can happen outside her door. And I couldn’t even protect her from the scary stuff that lives across the street.

And I understand that substance abuse issues can cause erratic behaviour and can lead to unpleasantness. And alcoholism is a cruel and vicious disease. And for that I am truly sorry. See? We all have personal demons, and I think we could all use some grace.  I just don’t want those demons around my child or on my property ever again.

Thank you.

Respectfully,

Your country neighbour

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