Last year Big Girl was at a private school. There was a girl. At the time I called her That Girl. She had a lot of problems, or so I was told. All I knew was that she was bossy and mean to my kid. She made her cry. She’d come off the bus, my little girl who was only five then six-years-old, sobbing because That Girl told her she wouldn’t be her friend anymore. Or that she wasn’t allowed to play with her and her friends. That Girl made fun of the food Big Girl ate, telling my girl that Wonder Bread was the only thing she should be eating. She refused to let my daughter sit next to her on a field trip, telling her that she wasn’t allowed because, ewww, she wasn’t her friend. The verbal stuff drove me nuts, but the topper, the thing that pushed me over the edge, was when That Girl pushed my Big Girl down, bruising her and causing more tears. Before you say, ah, what’s the big deal? The push was so hard it got That Girl suspended for a whole week.
I was stressed (to say the least) when all this was going on. Maybe stressed isn’t the right word. I was enraged by it all. Yes, that’s better. Enraged. Looking back, I can see that what was going on with Big Girl at school probably pushed more than a few of my buttons. My child, my baby, my first born was being bullied just as I, too had been bullied. I felt protective. I wanted to take my baby’s pain away. But mostly I just wanted That Girl to stop her mean behavior.
As the attacks continued and escalated, so did my dark feelings. I hated that child. I couldn’t understand — no, didn’t want to understand — why That Girl was targeting my kid. It sucked, especially because Big Girl worshiped That Girl, so I couldn’t even tell her to stay away from each other, and with a class size of a dozen it wasn’t as if telling her would do anything anyway. I vented to friends. I vented on Facebook. I also vented on this blog. It’s all a little fuzzy by this point (my husband made me take it down so I can’t even re-read it), but I believe I went off on the child, calling her a bitch. Sigh.
I’ve had plenty of “not my finest moment” moments on this blog. I am truly, truly an imperfect person. I get really mad and sometimes I overreact. It’s a flaw — definitely. That was probably one of my not so finest not so fine moments.
I see now how people may have thought I was the truly evil one. How I made myself look like the bitch by calling a child by the same epitaph. The thing that upsets me the most is that I am usually a nice person unless someone is messing with my kids.
Still, just because someone messes with my kids doesn’t mean I can go off about it, so my solution has been to avoid writing anything negative — about friends, acquaintances, and people in my life. If you click back through the past months you’ll see that I’ve changed the tone of my blog. I write about my issues sometimes, yes, but I don’t reference anyone in my life outside my immediate family. The lone exception was a mention of food dye at a class party, but otherwise I’ve been careful not to offend.
Anyway, the reason I am writing this is because I think it’s important to put two things out there. First, I am deeply sorry I called that child a bitch. I am also really sorry that I couldn’t find it in my heart to be more compassionate. Something really, really bad must have happened to that child to make her so damaged at such a young age. The second reason is to just reiterate that people don’t have to be afraid that I am going to write about them. I had someone joke recently saying, “You’re not going to write about this, right?” I told her the truth: Honestly, I’m not, especially if the this has to do with a child under the age of 18. Even if they push my kid down or eat high fructose-laden Wonder Bread.
I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. It’s been a long, busy week, and I am glad it’s Friday.