You Never Know . . . Unless You’re Told

While it’s easy to be measured in comments about those things of which we are wholly ignorant, it’s less easy to keep our mouths shut when it comes to the wider categories. For instance, I’d never contribute to a conversation about coding. In fact, never having heard a conversation about coding, I’m not sure these happen. For the sake of the example though, picture me sitting quietly just listening. Now, were the topic to be more broad, i.e., laptop vs. desktop, I could likely add to the discussion.

While coding and computers aren’t usually “emotional” or “personal” issues–save the notion that there are “Apple Families,” and according to my 11-year-old, our family isn’t one–there are many other topics we toss our two cents at thinking ourselves “informed” on the matter. Examples: diet, exercise, politics, money, sex, the best coffee, the best car, the best way to do fill-in-the-blank, and last, but by no means least, parenting.

For those of us charged with/expected to care for minor children with some degree of minimal competence, we sure have a lot to say to each other about how to do so in the “best” way. (The superlative, “best,” could be narrowed to focus on the “best” for the child, the parent, the family, or even, society as a whole.)

And for most of us, we use our own children as the hypothetical guinea pigs when asserting the “best” practices. It’s really all we know, so it makes sense that our own offspring are our frame of reference.

But not all of the test subjects are comparable.

Parenting can be an entirely different experience when the small humans are entirely different. My children are “different” than those children; those children are “different” than yours.

While we can find commonalities in some things, it is in the light of that “difference” where we can learn–not necessarily how to parent our own children “differently” but rather how another parent’s experience is “different” than our own.

I “met” a blogger back in October who, demographically and geographically, is a lot “like” me. As I have gotten to know Tina Williams, through reading her blog and responding to her comments on mine, I have come to learn that she is a mother of a child who has spina bifida, a birth defect that I have no knowledge of and no direct observation of.

Tina has decided to share her experience about being a mother to a child with SB through a new blog. She is a thoughtful and compassionate writer. I look forward to hearing how Tina brings those skills to bear on something personal which began when she was in her early pregnancy.

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I invite you to take a look at  Tina’s blog about her daughter, Lilly.




2 thoughts on “You Never Know . . . Unless You’re Told

  1. Wow, thanks so much for mentioning it, Jenna. I’ll be tripping along, trying to figure out the “best” way to parent Lilly, just like everybody else. Although I’d been thinking about doing the SB blog for awhile, you helped convince me to actually do it. Thank you!

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