Tough Life Lessons

Here it is, the end of August. This month has been full of ups and downs for myself and Rae. My biggest ups are Rae’s accomplishments. School: she’s gotten good colors every single day so far. That’s a big difference from last year. She’s reading books to me every day. Her chore chart is filling up with stars for daily jobs. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

My greatest down has been watching Rae face disappointment and losing her fur friend, Chloe (or Miss Kitty…it depends on the day. 🙂). She celebrated her dad’s birthday yesterday. The second one since his accident. We sent up balloons with some of the family and she sang with her cousins. Then she had to wake up this morning to learn that her outside cat had been attacked by dogs. This was another big deal for her simply because it’s the cat that showed up not long after her dad’s death. This leads to my point of this post…

My five year old had to learn today that not all animals are nice and sweet. She’s never had to deal with mean or vicious animals. She couldn’t wrap her brain around why these dogs wanted to hurt her kitty. Time for her “big girl” discussion.

I explained to her that sometimes you have a bad animal that doesn’t care who or what they hurt. There’s also some people in this world like that. God didn’t make them that way (people or animals), other things in this world did. Her innocence in this situation made me feel like dirt because I couldn’t do anything to help the poor cat. In my heart and mind, hurting those dogs wouldn’t have made the situation any better. I would’ve then had to try to justify those actions to Rae. She’s watching my every move. If I can show her what difference a hint of grace and compassion can make, even in tough times, then I hope they stick with her. I don’t want her to think it’s ok to let this often cruel world shape you into a different person than who you want to be. The Golden Rule has been a recurring topic since school started (thanks K5 teacher!!). Maybe…just maybe I can help inscribe that on her heart.

*Dont get me wrong, I am a firm believer in defending yourself and taking up for others, but don’t cast the first stone. It’s not worth the long term effects. Oh, and the dog situation is being dealt with by Animal Control.

Author: Nicole Nettles

I am a widowed mom of a 5 year old struggling with ADHD. My daughter was diagnosed at 4 while in pre-k. Her father passed away when she was only three and it has been an uphill battle ever since. She is my pride and joy, and every struggle we face is handled together. I hope looking into our daily lives will help you if you face some of the same difficulties.

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