|My Beautiful Baby Sela|
I have started this post so many times, over and over, "type words....delete....type words....delete" because right about now there are a million words floating through my head which are popping out at me and I know what I want to say, I am just so unsure and so frightened to say them. I am faced with frustration, anger, resentment, fear, and there is nothing I can do about it. Absolutely...NOTHING!
We as parents have this animal like instinct to protect our children no matter what happens. It starts from the very minute we bring our babies into the world. From the minute our babies are placed into our arms seconds after giving birth, there is this automatic connection we never knew we could ever experience ever. A love and bond is born, a love that runs deeper then bluest of ocean waters, there is a such a sense of that human love and beauty we never knew ever had.
When our child or children are inflicted in such a horrific pain we know what we want to say, we know what we want to do and for some reason it just seems as if we struggle to make sense of the whole thing.
There is no rhyme or reason
There is always that one topic that kids today are faced with each and every single day of their young lives. It is a topic that can take a child or young teen into the very depths of some of the darkest places of their young lives. I am talking BULLYING!
My daughter Sela was and still is the most sensitive child and I am sure there are thousands no, millions of children in this cold mean world that are just as sensitive as Sela. I remember when Sela was young and a stranger even glanced her way or complimented on how cute she was she would just begin to scream then dropping her crocodile tears. She would hide behind me or her father Felix.
|Sela with her dad Felix|
Once we moved up here to Washington State, Sela left behind her dad Felix and she was not ready or set for the change or what would come down the pike of her life and well to be honest, neither was I. It's not that I thought she was invincible to bad things happening to her, it's just that I like everyone else in the world always thought, "that could never happen to me, maybe someone else, but not us"
Gaiser School 4th Grade 2010
She had adjusted to her new school and surroundings in time just as any other child at a new school, new set of friends, just new everything. We left sunny California for a better life and to be closer to my parents. Soon Sela hit fourth grade an that was when everything changed.
She began acting different. She became defiant, she became more quiet then normal. She became withdrawn and she never wanted to ever wander out of my sight or far from me. It was as if she became Velcro to my side. I kept asking her over and over countless times, "are you sure there is nothing you want to talk about, share, because baby, you can tell me anything" and it was always the same answer..."no, I'm fine" her whole personality changed from laughter of my silly stupid jokes to never smiling. Sela began hiding out in her room and of course Sara was more than willing to pipe up her thoughts of Sela learning about herself and just to give Sela space.
I tried talking to Felix about it and he too said the same thing, "your worrying about nothing, stop trying to make something out of nothing." But as a mother, her protector, her guiding light of life, I knew better, I knew that something was wrong. Oh sure, I was told I was being paranoid, I was over exaggerating and being paranoid myself.
That was when I noticed she wanted to change her appearance. She wanted new clothes, she wanted a different backpack, she wanted different shoes, She wanted a different haircut. She wanted everything new and she was going to fight like it was her last breath to make that happen. For everything new thing that she had it never seemed to be good enough. She would come home telling me how stupid it was to carry her now new backpack that cost me $34.99 to now wanting one that was $125.00 and her reasoning was, "because it's cool and that is what all the other kids are using." she wanted what was just days old to newer things over and over.
Financially I just couldn't seem to keep up with what her demands were and when I told her, "no Sela, we just bought everything (shoes, jeans, shirts, backpack, lunch pail, hair cut, etc. etc.) a couple of days ago and I am not going to go out and buy you more things."
Sela would go into a tailspin panic. She stopped wanting to go to school she wanted to change schools and yet still I could never see the writing on the walls. Then one day while with Sara and Sela we headed to Walmart and I heard Sela ask Sara to go check something in the toy department. As I watched them both walk away I felt a sense of relief of being able to shop for what I came for. Both of my daughters were not gone very long and when they returned I could see the blank frightened look on Sara's face. I looked at Sela and then I could tell that she had been crying. Her face was red, her eyes bloodshot, her forehead strained from crying.
I asked what happened and Sara told me we had to leave right then and there. Sela clung to Sara wrapping her arms tightly around her waist like a vice grip clamping something together. I kept asking patiently what happened and then my patience turned to demanding to know. Sara just kept telling me we had to leave and we needed to leave right then and there. So, we left. I dropped my goods I wanted to purchase and walked out then got into the car. Sara told me to go home and she would talk about it at home.
Sela sat in the back seat by herself twisting and turning her hands which were now sweaty. She began to cry again over and over tears and snot joining each other then dropping to her jeans. Once we got home my patience was even worse and really demanded to know. That was when Sara lowered the boom on me!
"Sela told me in the toy department at Walmart that three girls at school were bullying her every single day. These three girls called her fat, ugly, that she needed to kill herself, she was a joke, that no on liked her at school, how they would walk by during lunch and toss her lunch to the ground then kicking it across the room."
I of course wanted to jump into action. I demanded to know who these girls were, what their names were, what grade they were in. Then I was struck with stupidity, I didn't know what to say, I mean I knew what I wanted to say yet for some reason it just wasn't coming out the right way. Anger set in, and when anger sets in with me, I am impossible to reason with.
Talking to the Principle
The next day I decided to keep Sela home from school so that she could spend the day with Sara and myself. Sela was so relived to not go to school and stay home. I was determined to talk to the principal that morning and that is just what I did. Okay, so I was teaching her to hide out and not handle the situation I just wanted to give her a break, give her some breathing room.
I drove to Gaiser school parked and then stormed my way into the front doors of the school. Lucy the principal was in a meeting and I just didn't care. I felt as if the school secretary was making excuses and I was not going to be excused. I was not going to leave my name and number for her to call me which we all know that never happens.
So, I stormed my way into her office and low and behold there I found Lucy the school principal eating her morning bagel and reading the morning paper. Lucy demanded to know what was going on an when I sat down lunging into my conversation she just blew me off.
"Wait, you come through my office door as if your going to take it off the hinges and your worried about your daughter being bullied?"
I was floored at her reaction, shocked actually because during this time in 2010, there were over 4,000 students that ended their lives stretching from the far corners of the United States to the four corners of the world took their lives due to bullying from another student. Those 4,000 students that I am talking about happened within a six month period of 2010 alone.
"Your acting like a lunatic in my office and I don't appreciate it. I mean if my two sons came home from school and told me that they were being bullied what am I supposed to do coddle them, hold them, or should I tell them to stand up for themselves? You want me to put a stop to this? Why didn't Sela come talk to me about this?"
I went into her office prepared with stats, stories, the number of kids that killed themselves due to bullying and she just turned her nose up to it. She acted as if I was boring her.
"Because I know deep down inside, you just don't care do you?" and with that sneered look on her face she just gazed at me like I was a bad habit. I reached across her desk to her newspaper and shifted through the stack then pulling out the "JOBS" section slamming it onto her desk then leaning in I took in a heavy breath then growled the deepest form I could staring her down...
"You my dear bitch, you can consider yourself FIRED!" that was when she thought she could stare me down but I held my ground. I was not going to give in. The "Mama Bear" had come alive and I was going to stop her at all cost. Lucy told me that she had a contract with Gaiser and before she could finish her sentence I walked around and got into her face and told her...
"Contracts are meant to be broken or burned, you will be fired, you will be replaced by the end of the week and if your not, I will sue the shit out of this school and don't think I won't. And, I will win because I always do."
I went home and contacted the school district told them what happened, what Lucy said. Lucy was replaced two days later with a new principal that had ZERO tolerance to bullying. Yep, she got fired!
How Dark Can Dark Really Get?