Let It All Out

I went off to pick the little travellers up from school yesterday with a spring in my step. The world was a beautiful place. I’d exercised in the morning, and then spoke to a parenting mag about some freelance work. I’d got some work done, and written a blog post about just how lovely the world can be. And then you guys started to say hi from all over the world. The world was full of warmth, positivity, and love. My world. At that moment.

Something was up with the second little traveller. When we met at the school gates she seemed relieved rather than excited to see me. She was skittish in the car, her eyes darted from conversation to conversation, and she looked, different.

“You said we could listen to Scream and Shout by Will.i.am on the way home from school” there was an edginess to the request.  I watched her sing the chorus without the usual smiles.

“I wanna scream and shout and let it all out, and scream and shout, and let it out”.

We went to the park and while I chatted to friends, I watched her playing. None of the usual big belly laughs, something was going on. And then when we got home, she accidentally let the dog out. While everyone else squealed and ran to get the leash, she burst into tears and fell in a heap.

“I ate my lunch in the toilet, because they all ran away from me”.

The world was not a beautiful place.

“She keeps whispering and I ask them what she’s saying and they won’t tell me. And then this morning at snack she told me I could sit at the table but I had to face in a different direction.”

Granny Max (my mother) gave me sage advice years ago, that when it comes to little girls, don’t get caught in the details of who, because it’s highly likely that this week’s perpetrator could well become next week’s requested sleepover. Don’t take it personally.

That being said, I wanted to get in the car and track that little girl down and then, well, I guess I wouldn’t have really run her over and then reversed back to make sure I’d got the job right, but in that split second, I thought about it.

My eyes were stinging as she sobbed through the explanation of what was happening in “the group”.

“Why are they doing it Mum?” there was hope in those big brown eyes, that I’d be able to explain it, that I’d give her the answer that would make it all make sense.

I headed down a familiar parental path. When people do these things it’s usually because they have their own problems, problems that have nothing to do with you. I shared my own war stories, confessed that I had also been one of those girls. I told her that this would make her stronger, that she would grow from it, learn from it. And then I told her the truth.

That this would happen again. Maybe not in the same form, but it was going to happen again.

Sometimes the people that we like, are the ones that can hurt us the most.

But sometimes, people that we haven’t even met, can show us that it’s going to be okay.

This morning we read through the comments from yesterday’s post. It was the opposite to eating your lunch in the bathroom, it was eating your lunch at your desk while hundreds of women stopped by and told you you were doing okay, to keep going.

Thank you for providing the proof that some days can be really tough, but mostly the world is a really nice place.

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