Well Again..

29 months ago I saw you fall

And I dropped everything.

I gave it everything I could because I knew I needed to do this.

You were ill.

Oh my, you were so ill.

It was time for nourishment, not arguments..

It was time for us.

We stopped with the douchebags.

We hunkered down.

We started again.

Every bedtime, mealtime, staring out the window time.

We started again.

Oh my, you were so ill.

Slowly it changed.

Slowly you came back.

Slowly slowly slowly.

So we started to let people in again.

Think about options.

What could that look like?

 “Thank you for trusting us with your family”

I could let go.

I did let go.

I mean, it was still slow.

I had to work hard on myself during this time.

But you were ready.

You needed it.

We could trust these people.

So now we start a new year and you are well.

Oh my goodness, you are so well.

You have done it.

I can let go.

You want me to go.

And it feels truly excellent.

What About?

‘But what about GCSEs?’

Even if you achieve them, they are not guarantees to life of happiness, wellness or success.

‘But don’t you want to give them the best chance?’

Of course, every parent wants this but they use this crafty phrasebook to catch us in the net of guilt and send us back.

‘Career Ladder’

Back to the swim lane.

Because after all, don’t we want our children to succeed?

So what if we jump ship?

Will we descend into chaos or will we actually guide our children in the important lessons?

The ones they need most?

Safety, love, consistency, confidence.

But what do I know? I’ve never worn a lanyard..

Special..

Special.

Different.

Other.

Imagine if our children were reminded of what they can do more than what they can’t?

Instead of learning how to hide who they are (until they break)

Instead of fix to fit we had options and flexibility.

What if we made adaptions that worked for everyone?

Strength based learning, emotional consistency, connection, safety, autonomy and interest based learning.

What if learning put as much importance on feeling confident and safe in who we are and learning about how we learn/work/relate to others?

Would there be less need for special, different, other and more for ‘all’?

New or Same?

You may be going into this year with gusto and confidence, a fresh start ready to deal with everything head on (even packed a notebook and have a folder this time)

You may be entering it with rage or frustration that you’ve let this mess drag on for as long as it has.

You may be feeling a strong need that this year is the year to shut it all out.. Close the door on this once and for all.

You may not be feeling like its a new or a fresh start because frankly, there is not a lot to be looking forward to.

Or it may all feel too much and you just want it to go away.

Whatever or whichever it is a New Year and while for many of us it may just be a calendar change with a few dark months ahead, it may also be the fresh start we need to make this year different in whatever way we need to..

Good luck, stay strong, stay okay.

You are needed.x

For Who?

Sometimes supports can be used to help that child learn/attend.

But what if what they are trying access is not appropriate?

All we are doing is ticking the attendance box

Who are they for?

Instead we need to look at the environment and will it work for them?

Sometimes support can be (the harsh reality) to provide evidence that ‘they’ did something.

But really, how many have really found those coffee mornings insightful, informative or child centred?

Who are they for?

Instead we need to learn from first hand experience what is really needed.

Sometimes support can be so that we can do what everyone else does.

But what if that is actually for you and not the child.

Who are they for?

Instead we need to listen and learn. Stop the narratives we have grown up on and question ourselves, those around us and the environment.

Can I do better?

What can I do to be what my child needs?

Am I wasting time on this?

What must this feel like for my child?

Because none of us will get the answers with an instant coffee and a self care reminder.

This is support to make their lives easier.

Not our child.

Instead I am saying I’m learning about myself and my child’s experiences so I can share this with others and hopefully we all do better next time.

Expectation..

Have you seen the place?

It’s like a beautiful stately home.

(That’ll please the grandparents)

It even does horse riding.

It looks like it’s meant to look.

It ticks the boxes.

And ‘they’ all want the answers.

A quick fix.

A solution.

But I don’t think that swanky building is for us.

Because it’s an advert, it’s selling an aspiration.

A goal we can’t ever quite reach/be like.

(We’ve all seen those Christmas ads)

But that’s not us.

We left that behind a long time ago.

When we realised it was going to take more than ‘the same but smaller.’

Not more training.

Not more micro managing.

We needed flexibility.

We needed totally different.

We needed a total rethink.

So I shed the expectations and ignored the generic questions.

We found our own thing.

We found kindness, emotional consistency, those who ‘just get it’

It’s a lot nicer actually but it doesn’t look like the brochure.

(I actually have a few ideas for my own advert but I couldn’t stand to see the faces in that pitch meeting)

Learning..

Some things I treasure..(like those pre school days when we cooked, read and played)

Some things I put in the bin..(shouting to get to school on time, those sinking feelings when I let comparison creep in)

But all of these things are learning.

We don’t enter this world full of answers- most of the time we are winging it, learning on the job.

No one knows it all, what works for one, might not for another.

(It can’t be your way or the high way)

The world is complicated. We are complicated.

(Even those professionals can’t know it all)

Give yourself a break.

Because we are all learning.

Some of us are further along than others.

But we can share what we know.

We will get it wrong sometimes.

They will get it wrong sometimes.

But change comes from safe spaces, to be able to say sorry.

Change comes from learning.

Change comes from doing a bit better the next time.

Change comes from saying sorry.

Change comes from thinking I won’t do that again.

Change comes from ignoring the unkind ones.

Pass it on..

Connections?

Answers take time.

Answers don’t come from direct questions.

I’m sorry it is not quick or easy, but life isn’t like that.

Life and connections are made over time and with a genuine interest.

You can’t force this to get what you need.

This isn’t about you anyway.

You are meant to be here for us, but you do it your way anyway.

Selective? Slow burner?

Call them what you like but you spend some time and I mean real time and you’ll see.

But you don’t.

Answers come creatively and its not a quick fix, answers take a while and in different ways.

You see, when you have relationships first and foremost you won’t need tick boxes or generic questions because you’ll have the empathetic response that is needed.

You’ll care because you’ve got to know them.

You’ll know how to talk to them and what makes them tick.

This can’t be forced because they’ll totally know if you are not being legit.

(You might need to sit on the floor or just hang out for a while)

This will take time.

This will take genuine interest.

This will take connection.

Scraps..

We’ve waited months, years?

I’ve left messages on a phone that’s never answered.

Direct questions.

Generic questions.

Frankly, pointless questions.

You do this and I let you.

(this is the double empathy problem playing out in all its glory)

You even ask me things I don’t want to my child to hear.

I mean, we don’t know you.

I don’t even have your phone number.

But we do this because it might work out, it might help?

Anyway I’ve explained it all now so we’ll just see it through to the end.

We’ve waited this long.

You never know..

Oh wait, now you’ve changed the plan.

But that’s not what you said.

Well, when?

How long?

I think that’s blown it.

I’ve blown it.

Right, I’m going to complain, this isn’t okay.

Oh I forgot, no one answers the phone.