Tuesday, 19 October 2010


The school that I work at has finally started dealing with bullying. Apparently there have been a spew of teen suicides in the US caused by intolerable peer bullying. Of course, "kids are so cruel" is the easy write-off. Of course, children see, children do, is the less easy one.

It reminds me of the impression I had of the kids at the group homes my mom worked at. All these adults, social workers, therapists, police, teachers, etc., would hover over these "problem" children and try to find solutions to their drug habits, poor performance in school, violent behaviour, promiscuity, etc. But if you punch a child in the stomach for 12 years, can you really wonder where their stomach ulcer came from? It seemed so obvious. And yet so taboo.

And in Italy, it is survival of the fittest. Being victimized is the worst shame you can imagine. Blame the victim for not being able to stand up to it is the standard wisdom.

I hate to admit it, but I am no longer a pacifist. I used to be, before having kids. Now, I follow the wisdom of an interesting man/husband/father I met this summer, "Never hit. Always hit back."

craving contact

I have been CRAVING contact with my boys. I just want to hug them, and play with them, and look at them, and admire them. I crave it so much it almost hurts! And next week, I have to go away for work.


I am totally dead-set on working part-time next year, but I have to get through this year first. I sometimes fear that something will happen to my boys in the meantime, so that when I do finally take the time to be with them, it will be too late. I can be so peasant-ly superstitious sometimes. Why would that be? It would be the worst kind of torment, that's why...

Friday, 1 October 2010

my baby is growing up

Yes, I felt the cliche emotions of every mother from the beginning of time, well, of the establishment of pre-school: my little boy is growing up, separate from me, and needs me less. He is his own little person, and has relationships (friends and teachers) that I know nothing about.

When I dropped him off at pre-school the other day, I cried. (No, not in front of him, of course!) I cried when I saw him sitting at the window waving to me. I cried when I saw him take off his shoes by himself and go play in the blow-up jungle gym. I cried yesterday when I saw him climb up onto the school bus.

As I write these words, I am so aware of their obvious resonance. Who knows? Maybe I am even plagiarizing, so widespread is this feeling among young mothers. Yet, I must express them because they are so intense.

How many rich emotions I've felt over the past few years? Emotions I would not have experienced if I had not become a mother. Wow.

motherly guilt

Lucas has been with my in-laws for 3 of the last 6 weeks. I think my mother-in-law thinks I am a terrible mother. She once said that when her kids were young, she couldn't be more than 30 minutes without them. She would never have let her kids away overnight. She said this proudly.

I have to admit that I did really miss Lucas this past stay. But it was the 3rd stay. I barely thought of him during the other stays. I do think that it is because I am alone-deprived, and over-tired, and not because I am a terrible mother. But still, the doubt remains - am I not fit to be a mother? Will me kids reproach me for not being an all-consuming mother as I should.