When we see our children sad or conflicted because of a social interaction at school; it is hard to not react with a comment full of emotion and vengefulness (I declare this to be a word). We want to protect our children from pain and most of the time it is hard for us to comprehend; because to us, our children are amazing. We see their full potential, their talents, their humor, and their heart but socially other children focus on the superficial and miss the good.
For Genevieve, as she gets closer to middle school this has been a harsh reality. She is one of two students in her fifth grade class without a cellphone; not because of financial hardship but because I feel there is more value in her learning to live without one.. She is 11 years old after all! The girls she used to hang out with have begun to leave her out and as you would imagine, this really hurts and confuses her.
Yesterday, while I flat ironed her hair, I did my best to explain why I have chosen to stick with the no cellphone campaign. I told her that I wanted her to spend her adolescent years learning to interact normally and effectively. I also told her that I only have a few years of her very long life to teach her morals, values, and about hard work. This seemed to resonate but she said it still hurt her feelings and I acknowledged that I am sure it did.
My suggestion to her was to find a positive spin for this tough situation and that her motives should always be earnest and never from vengeance. Yesterday, she started a comic, set in the medieval times, starring the kids in her class only the names have changed and their personalities exaggerated. This way when school gets hard, she can illustrate and problem solve her way through her feelings.
Today, she blew me away with her insight and compassion. I had just walked into the house from walking the dogs, Genevieve was on the computer. She informed me that was starting a website for kids and to raise awareness about bullying. She has named her organization United Heart. I do not normally promote things like this with my blog but hey, this is my kid and I believe she could really be on to something. So, please stop by her webpage or her Facebook page and send her some support. Also, if you know anyone who could benefit from peer support or are looking for an organization to get involved in, send them her way.
Taking it one day at a time and today with a big smile.