In an effort to reupload some of our old blog posts, I’ve started sifting through the data backup that I managed to get from the old site and came across this first blog I ever wrote – it seems fitting that it should be the first one I repost.
This was first posted on 16th January 2016. Marla and Phoebe were around 2.5 at the time.
So this, as you might gather, is my first blog. No really, my first ever. I’m still finding my way around this wordpress milarky, but I thought as a first attempt I might give a little background into why Tash and I wanted to set this up.
A week ago we spent the day at Cobbs Playbarn near Hungerford (well recommended by the way for local mummies), so that Marla and Phoebe could spend a bit of time together. Marla had been saying a few things lately about her little hand and starting to get a bit upset about it, so I figured it wouldn’t hurt for me to arrange a play date for them so she could see she wasn’t the only one with a little hand.
While we were there some boys, maybe 4 years old, saw Marla and mentioned her little hand. Tash was supervising the the girls around the barn at the time as I was feeding Summer, and she spoke to them, explaining that they were just born a little different, just like they were probably different in some ways too; the standard stuff we try to tell people that ask. Thankfully Phoebe was also nearby at the time and they could see that she wasn’t the only one – solidarity in numbers as she put it.
A little later I overheard them saying “there’s that scary girl again with the little hand “, I’m ashamed to say I didn’t say anything. I got upset. They were on the other side of a partition which would have made it difficult, but that’s not why I didn’t. I just felt so sad for her and upset that she is going to have kids saying these things to her all her life that I was just stunned into silence. In hindsight I thought of many things I’d liked to have said, but in the moment I was just stunned.
Tash and I spoke about it at the time, but this evening we chatted by text about it, this was the gist of our conversation:
We had a girl (maybe 8yo) very politely ask what happened to Marlas hand today, she was very sweet and accepted our explanation with no worries, just made a sad face, then Marla decided to climb up the chains to get to a slide, demonstrating that it wasn’t an issue. That I can deal with so much better than horrible little boys calling her scary.
Yeah, it always hit’s me like a brick when they are rude.
I lose count of how many times I wish Marla had two hands, my heart breaks for her for all the times she’s going to have to deal with people being mean or stupid about it. I can see why people would want to hide it, but I’d rather she was confident about it.
Yeah i agree, I hated being bullied in school and never wanted that for my child but I know it’s going to happen 🙁
Simon keeps saying that people who are confident and laugh things off tend to be bullied less than those who are insecure and respond negatively to it, I guess it’s that thing of people get bored when they don’t get a reaction. I wish I knew how to react to things like those boys to give Marla the confidence and ammo she will need later when she has to deal with it herself, but it always just floors me when I encounter it.
Maybe we should set up a support group for parents of bullied kids to help come up with ideas of how to deal with it.
(The next day)
I’ve just given myself a bit of a telling off and resolved myself to stop getting upset about this. If I get upset about it (even inwardly) Marla is going to pick up on that and she will get upset about it. Thats hardly going to inspire confidence in herself if I don’t show it myself.
So. I need to suck it up, come up with some witty comebacks for people that say the wrong thing, and start leading by example.
I’m thinking I might start a blog about this, what do you think and how would you like to collaborate on it?
I also thought that maybe it might be nice to put photos of Marla on it, but without her hand in it – kind of a “here’s my funny, beautiful daughter, yeah she had a hand missing but you don’t need to see it and it doesn’t matter “. That way I can show her to the world the way I see her.
And that’s how it started.