"The basic right of all human beings is the right to choose what to learn and think." ~John Holt

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I am That Mom......

~I am That Mom who would not allow her child to be put in daycare almost 17 years ago..... even when everyone in my family was pushing me to. I quit my job and my husband got three more.

~I am That Mom who allows every kid in the neighborhood in my house, lets them sleep over and have camp outs on my living room floor for days at a time.

~I am That Mom who lets her children color their hair, pierce their nose and drives to the store at 3am for another color of nail polish.

~ I am That Mom who watches South Park episodes one after the other with her kids.... while laughing hysterically.

~I am That Mom who allows her children to have rats, cats, guinea pigs, dogs, a pet pig, hamsters and stray animals because they love them and cherish their needs.

~I am That Mom who has moved over 26 times so that her husband could expand his career while allowing me to be home with my girls 24/7. One time from Florida to Chicago in the middle of winter! That was hard.

~I am That Mom who when asked by her younger daughter to take a 30 day raw food challenge, did successfully, and still doesn't eat meat and avoids cooked food because Chloe insist.

~I am That Mom who is weird about her children being around people or family members who are drinking alcohol...... because I am a person who has survived an alcoholic upbringing, and it freaks me out....

~I am That Mom who still allows her kids to sleep in her bed or on her floor all wrapped and cozy because they want to.

~I am That Mom who has almost lost both of her children..... Autumn (then age 2)  in an accidental drug overdose at a family function and Chloe, from  type 1 diabetes-DKA, Diabetic ketoacidosis.

~I am That Mom who doesn't push her daughter to drive just because she is 16. She'll learn when she is ready.

~I am That Mom who will sit back and watch her children become who they want to become ,without the worry of what other people think.

~So there!  :)


Monday, July 19, 2010

Our Volunteer Experience~

This past week my daughters and I volunteered at Ocala Civic Theater. It started out to be something that we anticipated would be a wonderful lesson and a positive experience, but unfortunately we ended our weekend with a sour taste in our mouths.

First, I would like to point out that we started our adventure in a Board Meeting. The room was filled with tension and stress. Basically what we learned there, which should have been a foreshadowing of our next three days, was that the theater is not just a fun and exciting place to learn for passionate kids and adults, but a place that is full of cliques and political bullying from people who are burnt out and frustrated.  $$

Without explaining in great details about each day, I will say that for the most part Autumn and Chloe had a nice time. We took a special liking to a teacher/volunteer named Jeff Sensat. Jeff made us feel welcome and part of the crowd! We had a wonderful experience talking with him after the board meeting on our first visit to the theater. He took us behind the scenes of the stage and made us feel special. I also volunteered  during the week. For three afternoons I helped paint the Footloose set with two men who work for the theater and several older men who volunteer their time to help create and construct the actual sets. Super nice folks and I am glad I had the pleasure of working with them.

The issue that caused our sadness and frustration began on Friday when we were asked by one of the teachers, whom Autumn had worked with all week, to come out on Sunday and observe and hopefully gain a volunteer spot behind the scenes of the play,  Footloose.  She had taken a liking to Autumn and had expressed her gratitude in families that allowed their children to evolve into people naturally without stress or personal persuasion. We  have great admiration for this particular teacher, we only wish she could have kept her word and showed up on Sunday like she had promised. We NEVER would have gone on Sunday if we had not been invited. But even without her presence on Sunday, the below situation should never have happened.

We showed up at the theater promptly at 2pm:

While sitting in the theater observing pictures being taken by the local news paper and talking with the light tech, my daughter Autumn approached me choking back tears telling me that we needed to leave.  She said that the stage manager had approached her and was nice, but explained that she had enough help with the rehearsal and that Autumn could leave.  Can you imagine?   The stage manager of the play is only 17 years old, very sweet, and I know that the direction of this comment did not originate from this young girl. It was from the director of the play, an adult who should have more compassion and love for someones feelings and dedication.  Autumn wasn't in the way, she was observing......and at that moment her spirit was robbed. This particular individual had observed Autumn volunteering all week and not that this means anything, but also myself, so she knew who we were, not strangers to the set.  How mean can someone be? One extra person for one day observing and learning........Sad, sad, sad.

Shame on you..... Mrs. Director!