You Think Too Much!
My earliest provable memory was of playing on the swings in my backyard with the girl next door. . .
by Rosemary Winter
We shared the same birthday, June 14th, but she was one year older than me. We were having a fun time swinging high and 'trying to touch the sky', when suddenly, the swing-set jumped forward and we both flew off our swings and into the unpainted wooden picket fence. I saw blood dripping from her forehead as she ran home crying.
I was disappointed that she was leaving since we were having such fun, and remember thinking she was 'such a baby' for running home crying like that. It wasn't until 30 some years later my mother was going through some papers she had accumulated and asked me when I needed stitches in my chin. Since I had 4 older brothers and an older and younger sister, it was understandable that my mother would not remember such a trifle incident.
She presented to me a receipt from a
doctor for the removal of stitches in my chin. I told
her the story and she exclaimed, 'do you realize how old
you were?' I was surprised to see that the incident was
3 months prior to my second birthday.
Science and psychology will most likely tell anyone that they could not be remembering such an early incident and it was probably told to them and that's why they 'remember' it. I know differently. I've always contended that babies know exactly what's going on around them and are very intelligent and cognitive. I raised my children with this understanding, always interested in their opinions and insights. So what, you say?
Children are consistently treated with less respect than adults and sometimes less humanely than some of our 4-legged friends. I remember my older brothers getting beatings with the belt, bare bottomed in the basement of our overcrowded little suburban home. I was spared the beatings for reasons unknown to me, but the fear from hearing my big brothers cry in pain and my fathers booming voice, yelling for them to stop crying, still plagues my being, to this day. God rest his soul, he was only dishing out what he received as a child.
So why do parents continue to think they will teach a
thing to their child by physically harming them? Beats
me. No pun intended. Actually, I would like to propose
that the problem is in the idea that we can raise
children without any education or instruction on the
subject. We're taught to read and add and multiply, and
then out into the world we go. We multiply (our little
science experiments!) and if we learned anything good
from our parents we pass it on and if we learned
anything bad from our parents, we pass that on too.
I was born and raised in western N.Y. and have been living in South Carolina for the last 5 years. I've worked part time as a substitute teacher in the public schools here and have come to see how accepted and common it is for parents to use corporal punishment.
It hasn't been that long since the children in the schools commonly received the 'strap' or 'paddle' for punishment in school. I even heard one school principal state that eliminating it was the downfall of the system.
I've felt a burning desire for a long time to be able to do something to open the eyes of those people out there that are physically and psychologically harming their children with corporal punishment.
What is it I can do? How do I reach anyone? I don't know the answer to that. I wonder if writing and publishing in a magazine could accomplish that. I've been told, 'I think too much'. Well, I've put a lot of thought into that comment and the only thing I can say in response to it is, that's impossible.
About the Author:
Rose Winter is a single mother of 4 living in South Carolina with her 9 year old and 29 year old. She enjoys freelance writing, walking, drawing, reading and caring for her children in her spare time.