Right now we are going through one of the biggest challenges I hope to ever imagine. We don’t talk about it in detail much. We can’t necessarily talk about it much in case our words are chewed up and spit back out into something that was never intended and probably not even true. Sometimes, though, it just gets to a point where some of it has to come out.
For the last two weeks, on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, we have spent most of our evenings doing nothing but homework. By the time we get home, make dinner and finish everything on the list there’s little time left before bed. Add to that the fact that studying for tests or practicing math facts or reading because our progress is falling way behind doesn’t seem to occur on most other days of the week and we have A TON of stuff we’re trying to accomplish any given night. It’s frustrating as a parent and, even worse, it’s frustrating for the kids – one of whom has even voiced the frustration of “bouncing back and forth” and “having different rules”. It sucks having to be the house where work has to get done, where TV is an exception and not the rule, where video games are purchased twice a year at best. It sucks watching any progress that was made previously completely unravel, watching him struggle trying to prep for a test, seeing his mind all over the place because more often than not he never has more than 2 nights to be anywhere and settle into a routine.
If we tried to raise that issue to the people that have the ability to make a decision regarding what’s best for this child we may likely be looked at like we are crazy. On the other side nothing is EVER done wrong – a constant game of he said she said. Without knowing any different, who do you believe? Better yet, after being presented with half-truths and nonsensical claims it makes it even more difficult to try to see that something is seriously wrong.
So we move forward doing our best and hoping that things will work out that way- not for us and our convenience, but for him. We even thought we may have had a breakthrough, someone other than us who knows it and sees it, who is supposedly suffering because they can’t see this child that they love so much. See, they did something to upset the balance and as a result have been cut off. They recognize how damaging and screwed up the things that occur in this kid’s life are. If they would stand up for this child then other people may finally start to listen, too.
There’s just one problem. Someone knows all their secrets. They know undesirable things they’ve done in the past, things they may still do today. They know that they have a dog they aren’t supposed to have. As a result they are afraid. If ever there were a time to put things in perspective now is certainly that time. Because while you’re afraid that your dog will be taken away from you, you want to know what I’m afraid of?
I’m afraid that this child will still constantly be used as a weapon to attack the people who care about him. For him to be severed from the people that love him simply because they disagree with someone else.
I’m afraid that he will continue to spiral down this path of inconsistency because there can never be a solid agreement of what’s best for him that will ever trump the idea of simply NOT agreeing with his father.
I’m afraid of this beautiful child regressing into a life of depression because he feels that things can never go right for him simply because he spends more time at one household in front of a TV screen, rather than working on the things necessary to provide him with the know how to stand on his own when he is a man.
I’m afraid of his health failing because he is fed fast food 3-5 days a week with no concern about his calorie and fat intake – which are also detrimental to his learning disadvantage.
I’m also afraid that child that you supposedly care so much for won’t make it out of 3rd grade. At this rate he may be lucky. So while you sit on the couch with your dog maybe once in a while you’ll stop to wonder how that boy that you love so dearly is doing and hope, like us, that things worked out for the best. Maybe, sometimes, you’ll wonder if you could have made a difference. In those moments just snuggle up a little closer with your dog and you’ll probably feel better.
In the meantime, I’ll wonder how it is that you can tell his father that you love this child, but you won’t do what’s right and stand up for him and for what you KNOW is best for him.