For the Children . . .

Vasek Polak Children’s Center in Long Beach, CA.

This is the children’s time of year. I don’t even think it is as much about getting Christmas presents as it is about a feeling of magic that happens at this special time. Lights everywhere, and people in colorful clothes seeming to be flying as they go to get last minute ingredients for one of the special meals served everywhere for all kinds of celebrations.

Adults seem preoccupied with all the preparations for gift exchanges, getting good bargains, addressing cards for friends and acquaintances, and just generally preoccupied.

This is a time when parents and others need to slow down and be extra aware of where their children are, what they are doing, and who they are with every moment. Here in Southern California, we have had a number of children kidnapped by criminal types who just wait for this time of year. Equally bad is leaving your children to see Santa and then not staying with them. And what about the moms who leave babies and young children in the cars while they “just run inside to take care of something for a minute.” Usually it happens in the summer, leaving the children to roast to death. What would you do if you came back from your shopping and found your child gone or dying in your car?

Children love magic, and they are magic. Let’s all help keep it that way. Every child is special regardless of what he or she does have or does not. It is what makes my Christmas for sure, and I hope it makes yours too.

18 thoughts on “For the Children . . .

  1. A very poignant post, Anne. I don’t have children but I think I’d be on heightened alert at this time because you’re right, us adults can be very pre-occupied with all the busy-ness preparing for Christmas, which is not just a shame for missing out on the magic of it all but it can also be very dangerous.
    Caz xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so kindly, Caz. I think the worst thing of all is when parents get so busy, they have no idea that their child is thinking about committing suicide. We sure have had a bunch of those in my area. And the sad thing of it all is that the parents never take any blame themselves; they put it all onto the school districts, hoping to get a big settlement. Peace and Happy Thanksgiving for you. Anne always

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Very unfortunately, most teachers and aides are not trained to know what to look for. They truly barely know how to identify when children are or have been abused either by staff or by parents, and secondly, the reality is that most of them, although we are mandated reporters of such, often a school (and I am not naming any, but trust that I have done the reporting and seen it shelved). Why does this happen. And trust that the schools know it. So why does it continue to happen? Schools get paid for the children in school each day unless they are private schools or have special funding that does not depend on that. I have had children come to school, their poor little noses draining down to their knees, and the school keeps them in school. So then we subs get it and we are out sick, but the school doesn’t get paid for us being in school. And most teachers are tenured, and so the school does not want to tackle that as it means a large lawsuit plus the more parents are aware of things going on in the school, the more likely they are to transfer their children or take them out of school and go for private schools (often religious ones) or home school them. How many sexual predators have been caught and sentenced in schools – teachers in the same schools caught? If one teacher is caught, wouldn’t you think the schools would train the aides, etc. on what to look for? It isn’t like it is rocket science. Well, this doesn’t happen at Christmas time usually, but it does happen.

      There is another legal aspect of the whole thing. Parents have fought hard to have their special needs (physical, developmental, emotional or a combination of all of these) children attend school, and if a special needs child is especially troubling to care for, they definitely want the rest from having the children all day long. It is actually a much more complex situation than I wrote about, but we do what we can and hope for the best. I worked with special needs children and juvenile delinquents for some 15+ years, and I loved the work, but it was very tiring. I still miss the work though, and every time I go by a school, I get a little ache to be back in school again. The older ladies and gentlemen often have the most luck with the children as the children see them as grandma or grandpa figures, and most times that is soothing for them. We older folks also are generally more quiet and can think up lots of alternatives for helping the children when they are having hard times because we have been through it with children of our own and grandchildren.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so kindly, Jennie. It is amazing what parents in public schools forget to take care of with their little ones – preschoolers and kinders. I have given children my own sweater or held an umbrella over them when it is raining because mom or dad forgot to bring them those things. Usually, but not always, we have some spares. But then I have not brought spares for myself, and have had children throw up on me. Sometimes we have children with a feeder tube, and we have to give them medicine and liquid food. I have also had the failure to thrive children. All of these require special watching and reporting of what and how much was consumed and if it came back up again. So for me, taking a child to a shopping center say at Christmas if they have some special needs such as that can cause them to have a meltdown because their poor little systems are not able to handle any stress, and lots of noise and lots of people around them can really cause some severe issues. The key is, if you have a child of your own, or you are in care of someone else’s (such as a school outing), take good care of them. Happy Thanksgiving to you and the children too!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It is amazing, Anne. I know exactly what you mean, and thank you for what you have given to children. A snuggle and attention (and proper food and clothing) is worth far more than a big outing. Happy Thanksgiving to you!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi All, I don’t volunteer all the time anymore; just when the need presents itself and only for short term situations. I am caregiver for my Richard now, so it doesn’t leave me much energy or time to do anything else with our animals also needing care etc. I still love it though, and you never know what kind of volunteer opportunity will present itself next.

    Like

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