I wrote a rant on my Facebook wall today. I don’t normally rant. I’m more of a get-pissed-off and stew on it for awhile or find a solution and get over it eventually kind of person. But today I shall rant knowing that influencing at least one person to do better (I suspect that person is me) will be worth the extra energy in my words today. I’m ranting about judgement. Judgement is likely a natural “go to” place when we feel unsafe. But it can stop. It has to stop! It has to stop in business and it has to stop with our children. My rant on Facebook is a mama rant. But it extends far into the business world we live in today, and the business world we are creating for our children… if we don’t stop now.
I’m posting my rant below. It says it all, but first I have to tell you I’m a bit surprised at myself that this is the “my first day of all my kids at school” blog. Frankly, I’ve been waiting for THIS blog post to be written for 5 years. If you know me, you know I sent my youngest daughter off to grade 1 this week which is epic, because I’ve only ever built my business and helped clients while manoeuvring around kids at home. I imagined this blog to be a glowing testimonial to the trials and tribulations of business growth while raising children and how I survived! And how my business thrived (eventually). And how happy I am. All of this is true. But that story will tell itself over the next 6 months with what is coming next for me and you.
For now, I rant. Here it is. If you are a parent, it’s important. If you can extrapolate to your business life, it’s also important for that too.
I usually ramble but not rant. Usually about work. But this is a rant. This is a mama rant. And it’s not about Miley Cyrus, because she can do what she wants to (her song says so). Before I log off and tackle that mountain I’m lamenting, one more request to mama bears to STOP judging. Also teach your kids to stop judging other kids and their exceedingly healthy, but uncute lunches. I am usually unaffected.
I refuse to go on Pinterest and discover how to make lunches cuter because somebody else’s mama did and their kid bragged about it (because cut up veggies, whole fruits, water and sandwiches with a homemade muffin or store-bought granola bar is what my kids get – minus the cute shapes and extra special heart-stickered packaging. They get their love from me in other ways.) I will spend my time teaching my child to be proud of her healthy lunch and reprimand her if she doesn’t eat all her veggies. I will teach her to compliment the child with the cute lunch on their mama’s great work and to get her self-worth from within herself, not from what others have that she does not. And I will tell her not to make her friends’ whose moms and dads work full time and cannot take time to cut up fruits and veggies to not brag about their healthier lunches. Their mamas are not worse or better than me. They are mamas (dads) who love their kids by going to work full-time for a variety of reasons, and do not have to show their love in the lunchbox. (Although secretly I hate lunchables – but I shall not judge – I am a fan of convenience if only it could be healthier).
And if my daughter wants to do 20 hours of gymnastics, is exceedingly joyful most of the time and gets good grades, it’s our business, not anyone else’s if who may think her competitive sport is going to break her body. It might. We know that. She knows that. We are not blind. But we also know more than you do about our child and about the sport she is in to know the benefits EXCEEDINGLY far outweigh the risks… for her. She is an athlete. In a world of girls being labeled whether they like it or not, this is the label she has chosen for herself. I think of all labels to be placed on a girl, this is a good one for HER. She’ll have great stories to tell of her kick-ass 10 year old self and this moment, this life she lives today, is making her a kick-ass 80 year old. I know it. I don’t mind working to pay for it. I don’t mind driving her. She has chosen how to spend her time and I think she’s made a great choice for her. This is our business. This is her choice. Hers and hers alone. With our support. It’s only our business.
I won’t judge your lunches and your choices for your kids’ if you don’t judge mine, or turn a blind eye when your children judge. Deal? Now, let’s go change the world into a safe, positive place for our children for when it’s their turn. Let’s start at home by having tough talks with our kids about how to treat others when they are unkind (all kids have their moments – including mine). Let’s not pretend our kids aren’t old enough or mature enough to know when they hurt others. Let’s not make excuses for them. Let’s not punish when teaching them will do. Let’s teach our kids to toughen up when a friend makes a mistake that hurts their feelings. Let’s teach our children to understand, be empathetic and forgive. Our girls (and boys) are not inheriting a better world yet, and in fact, we are creating a difficult world for them by not teaching them what we know now. We know better. Let’s do better. That’s what our mama super powers are really here for.