Health care is a basic human right, not a privilege. For some reason, we’ve allowed ourselves as Americans to be fooled into accepting that one must be blessed with “means” to actuate appropriate health care. As a nation we have failed to realize that our health care system is a barometer of our society’s value for human life.


Thursday, January 25, 2007

No More Cable and Tuesdays With Morrie

A couple of month’s ago, due to Charter’s complete lack of customer service and anxiousness to infuriate its customers, I shut off my cable, completely. That means no more tv channels, at all.

It’s tough getting used to not having the old standby of tv. I spent so much time convinced that I had no time to read, when in fact, I was spending my time watching tv rather than reading.

Since confining the tv to DVD use only, I’ve managed to read three books. That isn’t huge amounts, but compared to no books before, that is a pretty big feat. I actually don’t have a whole lot of time to read, but I do have some time.

I finished a book called “Tuesdays with Morrie” yesterday. This was such an enjoyable little book, that I had to bring it to other’s attention. It really examines what is important in life, and it addresses the eventuality of death.

This book really touched a spot inside of me. I think it would be easy to do that. With the kids lately, I’ve really been thinking how each of their diagnoses has taught me to be a better mother. I’ve been thinking how before diagnosis with Sandis I was always so hell-bent on being the disciplinarian, when what I really needed to be in most instances was compassionate. I needed to realize and accept limits rather than just deny that they existed. That is a hard thing to do.

As a parent, I am constantly bombarded by what is deemed acceptable for my kids. I am bombarded by other parents, by tv, by school, by day care. So much of what I encounter is telling me what my children should be. So little of it is telling me to learn what my children CAN be. All of this parenting hype has not helped me learn my children’s limitations, to understand their fears and help them overcome them, or to see their tears as a cry for help in hard situations rather than another failure to live up to society’s expectations.

It is really hard to have different expectations for your children than other parents, the school, the day care, and society. It is really stinking hard to say, you know what? It is okay if Sandis moves around a lot when we go out to eat and is disruptive to other eaters. We’ll just sit in the least obtrusive booth and help him learn ways to deal with his anxiety so hopefully as we go out to eat more he learns what is acceptable. And you know what else? If Gracie throws the mother of all temper tantrums when we are out and about, it is OK to give in to her and help her feel more grounded. I don’t have to be the unfeeling disciplinarian. I don’t have to make society’s rules my rules. Because every child is different. And these are my children. And what is my role? Is it more important that they fit into society’s mold? Or is it more important that they grow up into spiritually and morally whole confident individuals?

Parenting is a fine line to walk. Tuesdays with Morrie really talks about that society and expectation bit that helped me see my life with my children a little differently, and lent confidence where perhaps confidence has been lagging. We can have confidence in our choices and our lives, even if we walk the road less traveled.

1 comment:

Anil said...

I have not read the book, I watched the movie and loved it. It was a great thought provoking story.
Agree with you on parenting. I find myself int hose shoes a lot. I want my kids to have exposure from both cultures that the come from, the Indian side that I give them and the regular society that they live in. There are los of clashes and have to work hrough them.