Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

Irrational Thoughts and Kidnapping November 19, 2010

This week saw the final session of the creative writing class I teach. For the past 9 weeks I have taught ten 4th and 5th graders how to tell stories. Along with ten dedicated volunteer mentors, we have coaxed funny, scary, or deeply personal stories out of these children, turned them into short plays, and put them up on stage, performed by ten professional actors.  It’s such an incredible experience to see the students – especially the shy ones, or those who aren’t academically brilliant, or even those who are brilliant but can’t find a safe outlet – open up and pour out these wild and creative stories, and form bonds with the adults they have come to trust. Even though organizing 10-year-olds is sometimes like trying to wrangle cats, I love it and keep going back year after year.

This session one of the students lost her mother during the program. She skipped a class, but was back the following week, smiling, participating, and being her usual brave, strong self. At the end of the last class we play a game where everyone in the group has to share two likes and a wish. This little girl said she liked her dog and all the mentors, and she wished she could have her mom back.

I know that kidnapping is illegal and immoral, but for just that second I wanted to take that little girl home with me. While not all of us get to have children, I think that all children should have a good mother. This little girl had one, but lost her, and for a second I entertained the thought that maybe I could take her place.

It was a fleeting thought and a stupid one at that, and while I try to make sure my actions are legal and generally rational, no one ever said the same had to apply to my thoughts.

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4 Responses to “Irrational Thoughts and Kidnapping”

  1. monica Says:

    Your thought was not a stupid one, it came from a primal desire to care and love someone in need. I think that everyone knows you would never kidnap a child; I also know that not everyone whould have the idea to take a “wounded” child into their heart and home.
    Applaud the fact that you are capable of loving and giving so freely and openly. That is a tough situation, and one that would break my heart too.

  2. Mali Says:

    This post moved me. So much so that I’ve written one in response.

    http://nokiddinginnz.blogspot.com/2010/11/as-mother.html

  3. Kira Says:

    Your thoughts aren’t irrational. There are so many children/young adults whose needs are unmet. On the other end of the spectrum are healthy people who could help, who would love to fill the role of a mentor, or friend.
    I speak from experience, my start in life was not easy. I can’t tell you what it would have meant to me to have had a healthy voice in my life. I wish I had the answer, but are there ways to meet this end? I’ve heard of big sister programs……???

  4. Lily Says:

    What a gift for that child (and all those children) to have you during such a difficult time in her life. The skills you have given her may impact her for a lifetime. I had forgotten you did this and do hope you’ll share more stories.

    And I’ve definitely had similar thoughts over the years about kids. Totally normal and to be expected when you are a loving person.


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