Tag Archives: acceptance

Was it something I said?

When I was a girl my mother told me this:

“I’m glad my daughters aren’t beautiful.”

(She had four of them.)

“My daughters are interesting and smart and clever instead.”

We were sitting at a stoplight at Stapley and University.

I don’t remember where we were going.

I had heard this in little bits and pieces all my life, but somehow, maybe my age, maybe the stillness of the car, maybe the car itself as holding cell for an unwitting prisoner—this time especially, the words stung.

And penetrated deep into my soul. Continue reading

Like Mother, Like Superhero

I’m delighted to be able to share the parenting wisdom of one of my favorite writers, researcher and social worker Brené Brown, here on Letters to a Parent. If you haven’t found her site yet, set aside some time, click over, and prepare for a treat. This post is especially appropriate this week as we put away our holiday trinkets & relaxed schedules and return to our routines at school, work, and home. Enjoy! {And thanks, Brené!}

* * *

In January, Ellen and I ran into Nordstrom so I could pick up some make-up. While we were there, we decided to check out the sale in the children’s shoe department. I had on my workout clothes and was looking pretty ragged. When we got to the shoe department, there were three moms picking out shoes while their young daughters tried on boots and sneakers. These women were stunning and their daughters were equally beautiful.

As I tried to stay out of the swampland of comparison, I saw a strange blur of jerky movement out of the corner of my eye. It was Ellen. They were playing a pop song in the neighboring children’s department and Ellen was dancing. Or, to be more specific, she was doing the robot.

At the very moment that Ellen looked up and saw me watching her, I saw the magnificent moms and their matching daughters staring right at Ellen. They looked horrified. Ellen froze. Still bent over with her arms in rigid formation, she looked up at me with these eyes that said, “What do I do, Mom?” Continue reading

Grower’s vision

“Try to see your child as a seed that came in a packet without a label.  Your job is to provide the right environment and nutrients and to pull the weeds. You can’t decide what kind of flower you’ll get or in which season it will bloom”

~Anonymous, as quoted in The Blessing of a Skinned Knee, by Wendy Mogel