I have two very beautiful daughters. I know. They’re my daughters so I’m biased but I still say they’re gorgeous, both inside and out. I’ve talked about them often but I’d like to take this blog post to tell you a bit more about them and maybe a little something else as well.
My oldest daughter is 13, going on 21, lol. She’ll actually be 14 in July. She’s tall, thin, pretty, outgoing, and not afraid to try new things (for the most part.) I sometimes wonder if she was switched with someone else’s baby at the hospital because I possess none of these traits. Then, she opens her mouth and her attitude spills out and then I know…Yep, she’s definitely mine. She has other flaws too. For instance, she’s lazy when it comes to her homework and her chores. She talks back way more than is good for her health. She picks fights with her sister over nothing (in her mind it’s not nothing, but in reality, it’s nothing). Sometimes she can be moody and no fun to be around for no good reason at all.
When she was younger, she had a speech and language delay. It made her different. Having a speech and language delay affects all aspects of your life. If you have a hard time understanding what you read or what is being said to you, you not only have a hard time reading, but you have a hard time with math, science, history, everything. It’s tough being different but she was lucky in that kids never picked on her for her problems. Luckily, she overcame this setback and performs normally in school now. Well, except for when that laziness thing interferes. ;)
My youngest daughter is 11 going on 7. She’s a pretty girl with the best tan you’ve ever seen. She looks like she’s lived in California all her life instead of just one month. She’s sweet beyond all belief yet she has a wicked sense of humor. She has some of the quickest comebacks I have ever heard in a kid or an adult. She hates to see anyone or anything hurt either emotionally or physically. She has the ability to pick up on other people’s emotions around her to the point where they affect how she’s feeling. This can be a good thing or it can be a bad thing. It’s bad when someone else is angry or sad and she ends up crying and upset as a result of picking up on that.
She’s a different kid though. There’s no other way to say it. She was diagnosed with ADHD but she also has developmental delays and learning disabilities. Despite having taken her to several doctors, psychologists, and psychiatrists in three different states, we’ve never gotten a specific diagnosis for her. She has a touch of a lot of things but not all of any one thing. Sometimes, she exhibits traits of Asperger’s Syndrome or autism, but all the doctors insist she does not have either. She’s 11 but has the maturity level of a seven year old and that is the age of most of the kids she plays with, with them being as young as five but no older than eight or nine. All of this has combined to make it so that she struggles in school. A lot. A really lot.
Because of her differences and the tough time she has at school, she gets picked on a lot. Kids call her dumb and stupid and ask her questions that they know are too hard for her to answer just so that they can make more fun of her for not knowing. We homeschooled her for a while in North Carolina but she missed being in a “normal” school with other kids. So, we put her back into public schools here in California. She’s gone to school here all of 4 1/2 days and has already come home crying because of the other kids. Today, something pretty major happened and her dad and I had to go into the school.
It’s tough being different. Maybe all of this will make her a stronger person as an adult. Maybe being bullied is a part of growing up. Maybe saying that being bullied is a part of growing up is an easy answer to why a child hasn’t been instilled with the knowledge that being mean to others for the sake of being mean is wrong. Maybe more kids need to be taught that their actions have consequences and that making someone cry isn’t funny. Maybe more kids need to realize that words can injure and leave permanent damage in the same way that fists and weapons can.