Life’s Not Fair

I had an amazing weekend. Busy, but I got everything I wanted to do done. LOL. You like that right? Everything that I wanted to do. Not everything that I should have done, etc. But, it was perfect.

However, I wanted to tell you what happened when I picked up Munch from after care at school on Friday.  I missed the heck out of that little boy.  It was like my world was set right laying eyes on that beautiful kid of mine. He smiled this big grin and gave me a hug, but I knew something was wrong the minute he hugged me. What’s wrong I asked? “Nothing” he replied. I said, “Munch, I know something is bothering you baby. What is it? What is wrong?” He then told me how he got in trouble today in after care. He said that they were lining up for snack time and a young boy (in kindergarten) yelled out that he wanted to be second in line, but Munch beat him to be second in line. The little boy said to Munch, “Hey, that’s not fair. I wanted to be second.” Munch replied “Life’s not fair”. He said that the little boy was upset and then told the director. Munch said that he didn’t yell at the little boy. He said “I said it matter of fact mommy. I wasn’t mean or yelling” but the director told me that I shouldn’t have said it.

His little eyes were wide with fear. Fear that I would be mad at him. I said “Munch, you did nothing wrong. You were right. Life is not fair and as long as you weren’t mean to him, then you are giving him a dose of reality.” Was I wrong? I don’t think so.

Munch is very sensitive and feels for everyone, but I’m trying to toughen up his exterior to know that not everything will work out for you. You can try your best and still fail and you know what? That’s okay. Life’s not about being fair. Life is about doing the best you can and being a good human being. No one is going to give you anything.

But, could Munch have just given him the spot? Sure, but should he have too? The child wasn’t going to not get a snack. He just wasn’t second in line. I know that some people make think it harsh that I support what he said, but it’s cool. I believe that we should be good people, but we shouldn’t deny ourselves if we choose not too.

I would have been more hurt had the child not gotten a snack and Munch didn’t offer to share his. The reality is that I’m raising a black boy in a “post racial society” where many people think racism is dead. It’s not. He may get pulled over for being black and even though it may not be fair, you need to know how to act. He may be unfairly judged in the classroom or on the streets and it’s not fair, but it is the way it is. I’m teaching him how to survive when life’s not fair, because that’s all you can do.

What are your thoughts?

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Munch Love

Being a mother is how I truly learned to love. Today’s post is about my son whom I affectionately call Munch. I wanted to tell you why I love this little kid so much.

There are many reasons that I love this little 8 year old boy. But, I wanted to share 3 of them with you now. I hope I can explain in words all that this little boy means to me.

  1. First, this little boy can always make me feel better. No matter how bad my day is or how I feel like giving up, I know I can’t. Just by looking at me with his big brown eyes and smiling. I instantly feel the warmth and love and know that nothing matters more than being in this moment with him. Last month, I got some difficult news and I was really distraught. I was so angry and hurt and I felt lost. I allowed myself the normal 72 hours to bemoan my situation and then remember that my help comes from Jesus. It was difficult though. But, Munch is my reason for never wanting to give up. No matter how hard the situation or life appears, I have to keep going. His concern for me and others make me love him even more each day.
  2. Second, Munch is a child that doesn’t like change. That’s been one of the hardest things for me. When his dad and I divorced, he would always say “But, you are my family. If you’re divorcing does this mean that I have no more family?” Wow! He was only 5.  We would reassure him that we are still family. We just won’t be married or living together. I think he understood. But, over the years he’s been able to adapt better than I can imagine. His ability to adapt despite adversity is another reason that I love this boy.
  3. Third, Munch’s need for affirmation of his success is endearing. One of the things that I never heard from my mother while growing up was how proud she was of me. I never heard it. I guess you could say you should’ve assumed it, but is that realistic for a child? Nope. It wasn’t until I was a sophomore in college and I was walking across campus and a maintenance woman stopped me to say hi. She told me that your mom is so proud of you. She’s always reading the student paper to see what you’re doing as part of this organization or what you’re talking about. She brags about you a lot. I was floored. I never heard that. I was almost 20 and and I didn’t know she was proud of me. However, I knew that when I had children that I would acknowledge their successes often. Praise them for their accomplishments no matter how small so that if I should ever have to discipline them, they know that I don’t think the worst of them. I’ve done that since becoming a mom. I celebrate every milestone and give words of encouragement and accolades for everything and anything. He loves it and his need for affirmation of his accomplishments may seem troublesome, but I love it. I love celebrating him.

I love being a mom and my son makes me love it even more. Motherhood changed me. He changed me. I’m proud to say that my first #loveuary is for my son.

Who do you love? Tell me about it. Better, yet if you would like to blog about it, Ritu is hosting a #loveuary challenge. Please head over to her page and check it out.

im-self-sabotaging

I’m A Rockstar – Not!

Munch had his guitar lesson this weekend. To say that it was good would be to lie to you my dear friend. It was awful. I was stressed out with his lack of attention and wanted to scream “F**k it, let’s go!”

But, I didn’t. I sat through the most excruciating 40 minutes of my life. I mean it truly was worse than labor.

Why?

Because my dang Munch acted a monkey fool.  He refused to hold the guitar correctly. He didn’t know how to hold the pick. He seemed so uninterested. It drove me crazy. Never mind the fact that he said he wanted to play the dang guitar.

He slouched in the chair. Refused to follow the instructor and just seemed to give up. But, the worst part of this…he liked the lesson and wants to continue it.

I couldn’t believe it. I was so upset and confused. I asked him “Why Munch? You seemed to not ask questions and just sit there when the instructor talked to you.” He responded, “I didn’t understand what he was asking.” I asked him “Why didn’t you ask him to repeat it or tell him that you didn’t understand?” Guess what my Munch says?

Because I didn’t want to hurt his feelings.

I slapped my forehead and said “What? You didn’t want to hurt his feelings?” He replied “Yes”.  I explained to my budding rock star that he isn’t hurting anyone’s feelings by not asking questions. That is the key to life. Speak up when you don’t know something or you’re confused. Don’t ever just sit there and let them talk over you, especially when I’m paying for it.

I called Mr. C in frustration and he calmed me down. He was with his son who is 17 and plays the trumpet and he asked his son about the guitar. His son said that the guitar is a hard instrument and most children start off with the violin, flute or piccolo. Mr. C said, “See, it’s a hard instrument to learn. Just calm down and ask him does he want to take guitar lessons.”

Now, let me explain. I wasn’t expecting him to be the next Lenny Kravitz or anything. I just wanted him to show interest. I wanted him to be exceptionally astute during the lesson and just really decide if this is something he wanted to do or not. However, that wasn’t the case.

I was livid. I also didn’t know how I felt about the teacher. He was sort of young. In his 30’s. I don’t know if he had enough practice with children (especially those with no prior music experience). He kept calling him kid. He wasn’t really interested in warming up to Munch only showing him what to do.

I don’t know. This whole experience left me feeling weird. I want my son to do it if he wants. Mr. C suggested that I start off with our local parks and recreation and let him take music lessons there first. Mainly because he thinks it will be easier with other kids and less stress. I agreed.

He also suggested since Munch is ambidextrous that we take him to a guitar store and let him see whether or not the left or right guitar works better for him. He has truly calmed me down. I kissed Munch telling him that I love him and we will continue lessons if that is what he wants. He said yes.

That being said, I registered him for guitar classes through my local parks and recreation center and classes are weekly on Monday nights for an hour starting on September 12th. We’ll go to the guitar store in the next couple of weeks and figure out a guitar for him. I may rent it to see if he likes it and to confirm if he wants to play the electric (like he said or the acoustic). I’m optimistic that he’ll enjoy the lessons, or at least I hope so.

I’ll keep you posted.

He Likes

The way I kiss him.

The way I hold him.

The way that I explain difficult concepts.

The way that I spoil him.

The way that I believe in him.

The way that I scream his name.

The way that I tickle him.

He also likes…

The color of my lip gloss.

I smile.

It was bright red that day.

I replied, “It’s not gloss, but lipstick”

I bent over and kissed his perfect face

He had a pair of red lips on his face

I smiled

“I love you Munch”

“I love you too Mommy” he replied.

Kisses

He likes many things about me

My kisses are what he’ll remember

When he grows up and leaves me to find his own way

I will remember the day that I wore red lipstick

Not my usual lip gloss

And kissed the face of my sweet 8 year old angel

Red kisses

Red

The color of red

Blood is red

The stain on his shoes when he scrapped his knee

The blood gushing from his nose bleeds

I pray

That the color red

Will never be more than sweet kisses

On his face

Or scrapes when he falls

Or random inconvenient nose bleeds

I pray for no red sheets draped over his body

As he lays in the street

A victim

A child

My child

Who liked my red kisses

© Tikeetha Thomas

These Are Perilous Times

I didn’t want to write this. Another post about the injustices of those who are supposed to serve and protect killing two men last week. The videos. Social media. I couldn’t. I was too emotionally drained. Angry. Frustrated. Scared. Heartbroken.

So, I prayed. I prayed for healing for our nation. I prayed for the families of the victims. I prayed for the families of the officers who committed these heinous crimes. I prayed for the officers murdered in Dallas. I prayed.

In times of trouble there is not much I can do but write, protest and pray.

I can use my words to talk about the things that black parents feelbut you know.

I can talk to you about how I’m afraid for our black men dying at the hands of policebut you know.

I can talk to you about how I feel about our black girls dying too – but you know.  

I can tell you how it feels to be the mother of a black boy – but you can probably guess.

So, what is the purpose of this post? To simply ask you to look through a different lens. A lens outside of your own. Take me for example…Let’s see, you know that I love my son more than life itself. That he is the reason that I truly understand God’s love because he gifted him to me. You know that. You know that I spoil him, chastise him, kiss him, run him back and forth to the many activities and I record every moment of his life. Afraid to miss anything.

He is valuable.

He was wonderfully created and made by God.

Just like each of you.

But, I can’t understand why in this country we wear blinders and act like racism doesn’t exist. Let me break it down for you…It does. I’ve experienced it first-hand.

Do I believe that every white person is a racist or that every situation is about race? No, I don’t. Many black people don’t believe that either. But, I need you to understand this…we have to stop acting like we can’t talk about race or that racism doesn’t exist. 

When you can justify the killing of two black men as “they were probably doing something wrong” you’re part of the problem.  When you can write about someone’s past as fact and they are the victim,  you’re part of the problem. We have a problem people. Let’s own the problem and find a solution. 

Will you ever understand what it feels like to be black? No. No more than I can imagine what it’s like to be white, gay, Jewish or Muslim but that doesn’t mean that I don’t empathize with other human beings when things happen in communities outside my own.

We’re all human.

We all matter.

We were all created by God!

A righteous and just God that I have faith will heal this hurting nation.

Can you understand that?

I, like most black parents, fear for my son. I fear that he will be presumed guilty if he ever encounters a police officer. Judged on the streets and not the courtroom. He will be judged not by a righteous and just man. But, by someone who will see his beautiful skin color as a threat. It won’t matter that he’s a child or that he has no criminal background. He will be assumed guilty because he is black.

So, I want to know that the public servants (law enforcements) who may encounter my son treat him fairly. The way that they treat others who look like them. If they do shoot my son unjustly, I want the person to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. It’s that simple.

Do you know what it’s like to not let your son play with certain toys because you don’t want him to get gunned down like Tamir Rice? No toy guns. No real guns. Even though you have a right to bear arms in this country, the second amendment wasn’t designed to protect you Munch!

That’s what I have to explain to him. That’s what I have to tell my son someday. Our dirty laundry that the history books leave out. Do you tell your children the truth about our country’s history or do you omit it hoping and praying for better days?

The whole “if you don’t know your history you’re bound to repeat it” rings in my head. Are we repeating history? Silently. This thumping with the songs from my ancestors playing lowly in the background…We Shall Overcome!

We shall overcome.

When we stand united.

When we stand as one loving people knowing that we won’t allow the bad apples of our society to taint our generation.

To stain the fabric of our humanity.

We shall overcome.

 

Who Needs Talent?

That’s the question that I’m asking myself. Here’s a conversation that I had with my Munch a couple of weeks ago.

Munch: Mommy, are you coming to the talent show next Friday?

Me: Nope.

Munch: Why not Mommy? I’m performing. You have to come.

Me: Munch, what are you performing?

Munch: I’m dancing to Uptown Funk.

Me: By yourself or with friends?

Munch:  By myself. In front of the whole school, God and Jesus too.

Me: Didn’t you have to audition? Was there a permission form that was sent home that I missed?

Munch: No. I did audition. I went during lunch and they told me that I made it.

Me:  Thinking…They have set me up.

 

Let me tell you why I think I’ve been set-up….

My son can’t dance. He has no rhythm. He can’t hear a beat to save his life. It’s not a bad thing. Dancing may not be his gift. Some people are born with the natural gift of dance. He wasn’t. However, he has decided to perform at the school’s first talent show.

This scares me. Why? Because I don’t want my baby boy to be a trending topic on Twitter. He has not practiced the routine, but will show you his dance if prompted. It is really bad ya’ll. He looks like he’s having an epileptic seizure along with a bowel movement that is stuck. It’s true.

It’s twitchy and erratic and I don’t want anyone laughing at my baby. Yes, I’m straight forward and protective but I don’t want him to embarrass himself. Not publicly. So, I’m struggling. I’m smiling when he wants to show me his routine that he’s named “The Munch”.

Yep, I’ll be there next Friday night sitting front and center while my baby boy dances in front of the entire school, parents, God and Jesus praying that he’s not a trending topic. I will smile proudly, cheer him on loudly screaming “That’s my baby ya’ll”, give him kisses and high 5’s along with some balloons letting him know he’s a superstar. Why? Because parenting is about putting your best foot forward always. You have to be supportive when your children haven’t learned how to be embarrassed yet.