It has begun...ever so mildly, but it still stings my heart that it has begun...the establishment of a 'pecking order' at school.
I honestly hesitate to even write this because a lot of local people read my blog and I don't want to start anything, I won't demonize or canonize any 1st graders. I know that my kids aren't perfect. They are young and they are trying to figure it out. I just pray that as the adults in their lives we do our part to guide them.
Twice in a month one of my children has come home and reported hurtful unkind words or actions perpetuated against one of their siblings--not the type of bullying that would surprise anyone--just being called a crybaby and being intentionally left out of something (and then told about it).
Another one of my children has come home tearfully asking me what to do when they see one of their friends being repeatedly and intentionally left out by their crowd on the playground.
My children are beginning to learn that people are not always kind.
My initial temptation was to rush in and 'rescue'-- to call teachers, to call other Mamas. After praying about it I have decided to resist the urge to make that call or fire off an e-mail and to spend my time equipping my children for the next challenge instead. I reached this conclusion for two reasons: 1) They are OK. There has been concern and conversation, but not tears or any sign of emotional impact on them. 2) There WILL be a next time. Maybe not on this playground or with these same kids, but in some other setting with some other people. I am 37 and I still know bullies. My children will be far better served learning how to deal with them and not be one.
I am teaching them to put everything through the filter of Truth. My wise friend Holly taught me years ago to ask them to put the ugly and unkind things through the Phillipians 4:8 test:
Is it true?
The best, not the worst?
Beautiful, not the ugly?
Because these are the things God tells us to dwell on.
And then this morning I came across this beautiful post by my new imaginary best friend, Glennon, at Momastery. I am ABSOLUTELY reading this to my children tonight at bedtime! Because they need to hear it...and because I still remember the Adams in my past and it makes me feel sad and ashamed.