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I’m a great fan of positive uplifting inspiring compassionate stories. One of my favourite sources is The Kindness Blog right here on WordPress.  The stories they share always remind me that the world is a good place, that the thorns are outshone by the blossoms and that ultimately we make things work out in the end.

One of the stories they shared today was called “To The Girls Who Mocked My Son In The Mall” by Lisa Smith

None of us want to think of our child as insensitive, or worse yet an actual bully. None of us want our children to experience bullying or others being insensitive either.  But, we all know that sometimes life deals us situations that make us squirm and require us to do something.  Pema Chodren might say it’s our shenpa;  the urge, the hook, that triggers our habitual tendency to close down and react.

One day at the mall, after a lovely outing with her two youngest who have special needs, Lisa Smith was faced with this kind of situation.  I think she handled it beautifully.

I could relate to her words so well,

“I had gone from happy and quietly content to irate in a fraction of a second.”

A mother’s innate need to protect her children, those who are vulnerable, how we act as much on instinct as planning.

I cannot remember my exact words but I believe they were, “My son has autism. I sure hope you are not making fun of him.”

And then the hardest part, the part about realizing that our world is more grey than black and white.  That the villains probably have some good points and that the heroes are human too.

“As we all continued down the hall I had to remind myself that all five of you are just kids, probably very nice girls most of the time. One of you were impulsive enough to make fun of the differences you saw in my son and the other four were weak enough to go along with the joke.”

It’s hard being a parent, it’s hard being different, it’s hard growing up.  However, mixed into all that difficulty is an awful lot of beauty.  The beauty of love, caring, compassion, growing, learning and forgiving.  Life is all mixed up in this huge ball of experience, emotion and reaction.  And just like a ball, we need to learn to roll and bounce through life’s challenges.

I think these kids are going to learn how to navigate their challenges because they’ve obviously got a wonderful supportive family and community.  I think 5 young women also will look back on this experience for the rest of their lives remembering that their actions don’t go unnoticed and that they affect others more than they may ever have realized.

As Ms. Smith points out

“If statistics prove true and all five of you grow up to become mothers, chances are that one of you will have a child or a grandchild with a disability. I do not wish that on your child or grandchild…”

I wish only the best for the family and the 5 young women.  They have been given an opportunity to learn and grow, and hopefully they will think about what they are doing and have been inspired to help build others up rather than tear them down.

©2014 Rise Like Air  J. Fries

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