Another Mother’s Day Perspective

inspired by a sunriseThis has been on my mind for the past few days with all the Mothers’ Day posts…

It’s great that many get excited over the day, but I just wanted to acknowledge that for some, this day brings up a lot of conflicted emotions…

If you:
-lost a mother
-are estranged from your mother
-have a toxic relationship with your mother
-never had a mother
-have had issues trying to become a mother or are a grieving mother

…or for any other reason, just aren’t feeling very celebratory towards Sunday…

I understand.
It’s okay.

From one woman to another, you never know if some girl in your neighborhood looks up to you and is inspired by you. Or you may mean something to someone else and you have no idea… even if nobody gets you a card, flowers, or takes you out for a meal.

So to all those ladies out there who would rather have this Sunday come and go, I honor you today.

-Kisses XxXx

How to Give Your Child “One Million Kisses” My Debut Book Is Finally Available for Purchase!

One Million KissesIt’s been over ten years since I became a mom and wrote a poem about kissing my daughter.  Over ten months since meeting with a publisher.

Even though I knew this day was coming, I’m still surprised that it’s finally here… I’m a published author with a book out on the market!

For less than ten dollars, you will:

  • have a sweet illustrated poem that teaches about the concept of one million and how families can give and get “One Million Kisses”
  • support a small, independent brick and mortar children’s book publishing company
  • contribute to my “Trauma-Free Parenting” movement
  • help with my vision of reaching out to families that takes a proactive approach to mental health issues.

CLICK HERE to buy the book!

 

Children and PTSD- 5 Common Events That Could Put Them At Risk

trauma PTSD
One of the biggest lies…

PTSD is not just for veterans; it can happen to anybody if they have experienced or witnessed a particularly upsetting event.  Children are at a higher risk of developing PTSD because they lack the sophisticated coping mechanisms to process certain stimuli.

When people think of sustaining a trauma, many conjure up images of combat, but children are constantly struggling to navigate the world even though they may not be on a battlefield.

Here are some “normal” events in a child’s life that may cause some “abnormal” responses in your younger family members:

5. A DEATH– it could be a grandparent or pet.  We are able to accept the reality of death better than a child.  The knowledge that they will never have that loved one in their life anymore could be felt way more intensely than you may realize.

4. A DIVORCE– when you think about it, this is a death, too.  Their family as they know it is flat-lining.

3. A MOVE– again, another loss.  They are losing their school, their friends, their house… Basically, their entire world.

2. An INJURY– While we as parents may be relieved that they “only” broke an arm or that they got better from their hospitalization, they may not feel that way.  Getting an X-ray, getting blood drawn, having strangers look at them… all of these experiences could make them feel violated.  In addition, TBI (traumatic brain injuries), or concussions, can also be traumatic, as the name implies.  If the brain has sustained some impact and the brain is how we process information, it only stands to reason that a developing mind may need some help healing, or that there may be injuries that do not necessarily show up on a standard brain scan at the ER.

1. A DISCIPLINE– It could be a one-time occurrence, or a long-term environment of hostility.  Do you find yourself yelling a lot?  Doling out consequences for minor incidences?  Do you lay your hands on your child?  In short, do you find that your child is frequently crying or protesting as a result of your actions?  This is a sign they are being traumatized.  It’s a different form of PTSD- CPTSD, “C” meaning “Complex.”

Time doe NOT heal all wounds… Sometimes, we need to reach out to professionals to help us.  Adults have a difficult enough time with asking for help; children need us to ask FOR them.

My next post in this series will be the Top Five “Normal” Symptoms that may indicate your child may be suffering from a trauma-induced event.

In the meantime, if you are concerned about your child, remember that you can contact their school’s guidance counselor at any time and they can assist you in getting your child the help they may need.

Make it the #153Promise to think about your child’s life from a child’s mind.

-Kisses! XxXx

 

 

 

Hidden Car Danger Staring You In The Face!

I promised the original Facebook poster that I’d put this on my blog to warn other parents about this potential danger:

Mirror starts fire in car
Keep Those Visors Flipped Up!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It took my brain a moment to actually understand what happened in the picture… (It doesn’t take much to get me confused, lol!)   Apparently, someone had left the visor down with the mirror exposed. (Some visors have covers for the mirrors; others don’t.) The mirror must have acted like Piggy’s glasses in Lord of the Flies and started a fire!

Thank goodness it happened while they were in the car!  But can you imagine what could have happened if this had been in a parking lot while they were out shopping or running errands?!?

I mean, who’d think something like this could happen?

So here are a few suggestions:

  • get in the habit of checking that all visors are up
  • make sure no mirrors/lenses or any potential fire starters are left in the car
  • tape all mirrored visors shut and put a little affirmation saying, “You’re beautiful!”

There are some posts on Facebook that I could easily do without… then there are ones like this that could easily avoid tragedies.

I’m so thankful I saw this picture this morning- and also glad that the poster’s family was not hurt.  That image of the scorched upholstery will be burned in my mind for quite a while…

(Yes, I did go there!)  

Make it your 153Promise to keep your family safe at all times!

-Kisses! XxXx

 

Shana Perez Investigation Confirms My Points

paddling school georgia perez
Boy gets paddled while mom films it

More is coming to light regarding the paddling incident in Georgia.

The finer points are:

-Paddling is legal in Georgia

-Perez did NOT sign a form excusing him from such treatment

-At no time did the school say paddle or jail for mom

-The son had hit another student, ran away from teachers, and spit.

-Perez has no medical records to support her claim that her son has extenuating circumstances leading to his absence.

My analysis?  This means that her “excuse” that she had her son paddled to avoid jail (which would have been horrible enough!) is not even true.  Therefore, we WILLINGLY let her son be hit by school officials… and she uploaded the video on her SM platform.

Now, she’s trying to milk her 15 seconds of fame by possibly seeking out a lawsuit.

I’ll keep checking back and update everyone about this parenting train wreck.

I’m trying to see the silver lining in this story… maybe this much-publicized news event will wake people up to the fact that corporal punishment — which includes spanking! — is NOT a good way to teach discipline to your child.

Make it your #153Promise to never hit — or let others hit (including partners) — your child.

-Kisses! XxXx

 

3 Reasons Why the Georgia Paddling is So Messed Up

middle finger mother and child
Mother of Paddled Student in Covington, Georgia

I found this news story on one of my online forms today.  It’s about a mother whose five year old son was paddled for spitting.

If I understand the convoluted logic, the woman had previously been arrested for truancy; the child had 18 unexcused absences and 20 tardiness citations.  Therefore, in lieu of being suspended (resulting in missing more school and further truancy), the child was administered corporal punishment… which was then posted on social media.

The details vary from site to site, but the mother claims that the child has a condition (not specified) and that this was the only way to avoid getting arrested.

There are so many things wrong with this story, my head is spinning.  But I’ll limit myself to my top three:

3.  Corporal punishment is NOT effective.  Even if a child does not repeat the offense, it’s not because they learned why what they did was wrong.  They just learn fear and the lesson that physical violence is a good way to solve problems.  The Jasper County Primary School in Covington, Georgia should know better.

2.  It’s the mother’s fault it came to this.  I realize I may not know the whole story, but if there ARE underlying circumstances why her son didn’t go to school all those times, wouldn’t those be excused absences?  The boy spit.  At five, he should know better.  But a little poking around on Facebook, and the mother has posted several pictures of her and her son flipping the bird.  Charming

1.The mother let her child take a beating on the bottom to save her own @$$.  She claims that she couldn’t do anything to stop it…  Maybe because she was too busy taking a video for her to upload.  Did you see those two women with the boy?  Have you seen the mother?  I think she could take them both on if she had truly cared.  This was NOT a mother in Momma Bear mode; this was a woman with priorities bigger than protecting her son.  Would I go to jail if it meant I was taking one for the team instead of letting my child be traumatized?  You betcha.  In an instant.

It will be interesting to see if the media follows up on this train wreck of a news story.  But most likely, it will be a blip on the screen and be quickly forgotten among all the rest of the dysfunction out there in the world.

Make it your #153Promise to be a parent of fame; not shame.

-Kisses! XxXx

 

 

Dr. Laura of Aha! Parenting- A Kindred Spirit

happy family, mulitcultural

Last night, I attended a parenting seminar organized by our school district.  The focus was on handling sibling conflict.

As soon as I learned about the event, I knew right away that I wanted to be there- not because my children fight (I’m very happy to say my 10 and 3 year old are very loving to each other!), but because I wanted to see if a prominent expert in the field of parenting and I are on the same page.

I was given a handout upon entering the auditorium outlining some of the speaker’s finer points.  Right way, I knew I’d be in for a very affirming evening; THREE of my 4 Verbs of Love were on the sheet!

Psychologist, author, coach and speaker Dr. Laura Markham presented a wealth of information regarding ways to approach your children in a manner that is kind, rather than combative.

I can’t possibly get into all the details on this post, but I must have looked like a bobble head all night because I was nodding my head in agreement almost constantly.

Not only were we on the same page; I took about a page of my own notes — my own Aha! moments, if you will — that I plan to make as future posts, linking back to her site every time.

But for now, I leave you with the way to purchase her two books.

Make it your #153Promise to create a trauma-free parenting (my tagline) environment by picking up a copies of her Peaceful Parenting series today.  You and your children will be happier for it!

Kisses! XxXx

Mad Poets Society Tonight!

pen feather quill poetryA former student and I have a big event tonight!  To say I’m nervous is an understatement!

I signed up for this gig back in October when I attended our local poetry series and jumped at the chance to be the featured poet this month- both the month that my book is SUPPOSED to be out (was hoping it’d be physically here by now!) AND national poetry month!

So… I plan to have a sign up sheet to capture people’s contact information and make it a contest to get a personally autographed copy of “One Million Kisses,” as soon as it gets back from the printers.

That way, I can blast them all when they are available for purchase.

I’m really wondering how many people will show up… My English department head read last time I attended, and there was a room full of students doing it for extra credit…  I invited all my friends and followers on social media, and I know a few former professors of mine plan on attending…  No pressure whatsoever, huh?

I plan to be my own inner parent to get me through this… words of encouragement like, “You got this!  People want to like you!  Trust yourself!”

I’ll be sure to post tomorrow, telling you all how it went.

Make it your #153Promise to be the inner voice to yourself that you want playing in your own children’s head!

-Kisses XxXx!

 

Family at the Y: Part Two

lobby conversation

I was back at the YMCA for our Saturday routine.  My son loves to play at the child center, and I love to do my writing.  Win-Win!  This is what I wrote during that time:

I just sat down at the lobby and settled into my usual chair with my laptop, and whom do I see?  That same family — from last week’s”Open Letter” post — minus the mother.

The same girl who was having a huge meltdown is sitting on the floor, coloring like a normal kid.  Her brother, who was adding to the torment last week, is on his tablet.  Her father is still introverted, engrossed on his phone.  And my heart is pounding.

She just headed off to dance class, so it’s just the dad and brother.  I’m tempted to ask him if he was hear last week…  Just a friendly question to start a conversation.  See what he says….

(Ten minutes later…)

I did it!  I reached out to him and we had a nice conversation.  I asked him if he was here last week.  At first, he acted like he couldn’t remember.  So I explained that his kids look familiar to me, but I couldn’t place it… Was it from the Y?  School?  Town?  We started chatting about what brings us here… my daughter’s gymnastics, etc…  He said they come every week.  Then his son wanted to go to Starbucks, so we talked about the different flavors… how white chocolate is an oxymoron to me.  He laughed.  It was nice. They went to get the kid his designer Starbucks beverage.

But then it occurred to me… if he comes here every week, why did he act like he couldn’t recall last week?  In my own mind, I concluded that it was due to embarrassment from the display last Saturday.

(Update…)

They came back and we chatted until his daughter came back.  We talked about everything under the sun: caffeine addiction; my tinnitus; how our kids got their names… and of course, my book!  ; )

I managed to work “One Mllion Kisses” and my 153Promise trauma-free parenting movement into the conversation because he said how he and his wife went out last night.  I mentioned how I had plans to see a speaker tonight… It’s a teacher/coach who speaks about his experiences (a future post this week) and I was going for research purposes regarding my promotions strategy.  That’s when I saw it happen…

Once I began pitching my vision and mission statements, he almost cried.  He said how difficult it is to raise kids, despite the fact that we love them.  How the idea of a support group would be great.

His daughter came back from dance; I got my son from the play center; I gave the father my card; and we planned to see each other next week.

So here I am, Monday morning, turning this play-by-play into a post, and I’m filled with a bunch of reactions twisting in my mind:

  • I’m so glad I approached him with kindness
  • If my tactic were different, I wonder how he would have reacted
  • This exchange could give credence to my theory that he’s been abused by her as well
  • Interesting how the children were fine… not in her presence
  • I’m encouraged by his reaction to my goals- maybe I can make a difference instead of preaching to the choir
  • The L.O.V.E. approach works with my target audience, too!
  • I wonder if he went home and shared our conversation with his wife
  • Who’s going to be there next week?  What will happen?

It just goes to show that you never know what is possible… Make it your #153Promise to be positive, be courageous, and be open to amazing things that can happen… and to see the amazing in the small moments.

-Kisses! XxXx

 

 

Ending Child Abuse is a Communist Agenda? When Did Parenting Become Political?

child with flag
Parenting is NOT a Political Issue!

Quick question: Does wanting to end child abuse make you a Communist?  Let me explain…

My husband sent me THIS LINK  from Face Book that has a video about not physically or emotionally abusing your children.  It’s based on the premise that parents who yell and hit have children who yell and hit.  It is originally from this website: Children See, Children Learn.  I am glad to have another resource to add to my list of organizations who are in line with the Vision and Mission of 153Promise.

Again, like yesterday’s post, I began reading the comments.  (Warning: it could ruin your day.)

People got SO ANGRY from watching an anti-parental bullying PSA!  They defend hitting their child, say that’s why we have brats is due to lack of spanking, and then it degrades into a political debate…

Flag polticalPeople post the quantum leap that videos like this are the work of the Liberals/Socialists/Communists in the US of A. They started making comparisons to totally unrelated issues like gun control and fighting in the Middle East.

Then, I noticed a trend… the ones who were upset MOST at this video were the ones who were spanked as a kid and who defend spanking their own kids!  That legacy is the EXACT TREND the PSA is trying to end!

Perhaps if those negative posters were shown more L.O.V.E. as a child, they would not be so miserable today.

If my commitment to raise my child in a trauma-free environment makes me a Liberal, then so be it.  I will LOVE my children liberally.  I will liberally shower my children with kisses and hugs.

Make it your #153Promise to join the TFPP- Trauma-Free Parenting Party, no matter what your political affiliation!

-Kisses! XxXx