I’ve been doing a lot of remembering back to my childhood. I’ve been having fun looking through old photos and remember all the good times I had. While looking through those photos I found a poem I wrote about myself in the third grade. Some of it is trivial but other parts of it made me sad to read. My heart would break if my kids wrote this (I know it did to my parents when they read this). I asked myself, why did I feel this way? I know some of it is what other kids would say about me. ANd some of it was just small words from my parents and/or brother would say. It all made me think about how I talk around my kids, how I talk about them and how I talk about others. I know I wrote about being careful on how we talk about others around our kids, but I think it’s important to meantion it again. Here is a photo of me in 3rd grade. I look at it now and see a cute/beautiful kid, I remember not feeling so pretty or liked back then.
Now here is the poem I wrote. Notice I open up with my “ape like arms”, I then go into my freckles. I end with no one caring about me but my cats. It’s quite a sad poem for a 3rd grader. (I’ll put the typed up version at the end of this post, just in case you can’t read what I wrote.)
I think we should reflect upon what we say, how we say it. Not only about our kids or those around us but also about ourselves. I know many times I heard my mom talk about herself in a negative way, “I’m fat.”, “I’m ugly” are words I remember hearing. I wonder if my 3rd grade self took those words and looked in the mirror and thought the same things as her mommy did, because she heard her mommy talk like that. I know my mom didn’t say those things to hurt me or to give me a negative self image. But I do wonder what impact they had on me as a kid. And now as an adult I have caught myself many times saying those same phrases and other negative things about myself, in front of my kids.
We/I need to STOP the negative self talk. Even in the private of our own room, it doesn’t matter, STOP the bad talk about yourself. It’s a horrible cycle we have gotten ourselves in. Generation after generation hear the negative talk as a kid, then grow up doing it to themselves. I’m sad by it and I really hope I can teach my kids to love themselves, no matter what.
I also think we need to work harder on teaching our kids to be kind to one another. Kids can be mean sometimes. They call each other names, some of them are horrible. It’s not ok to call someone a bad name or tell them they look ugly. I remember a song kids would sing to each other, “U.G.L.Y. you ain’t got no alibi, you’re ugly, yeah yeah you’re ugly. M.A.M.A. how do you think you got that way? Your mama, yeah yeah your mama.” UGH… Even typing makes me feel horrible and I know I said it as a kid, sometimes to join in with other kids or sometimes just to be funny. Either way it wasn’t ok. I hope my kids never do this, it’s an easy thing to fall into. One kid does it and everyone laughs so other kids follow.
I wore pink yesterday to show my support in the anti-bullying campaign. Calling each other bad names is bullying, hitting each other is bullying. It’s not just a kid problem either, adults do it too, which in turn makes kids think it’s ok.
Please be KIND to others and please be KIND to yourself. Remember YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!!! You are you!!
My arms look like a ape.
I have frekles(freckles) on my arms and my face.
I go to Lincoln School.
I like my techer(teacher).
I have a lot of frends (friends).
I suk(suck) my thum(thumb).
I go to sleep at 8:00.
I have a small room.
MY BROUTHER(brother) IS A BRAT.
My brouther(brother) hits me a lout(lot).
No boty(nobody) cears(cares) about me but the to(two) cats that I have cears(cares) about me.
My birthday is Jan 11.”