Thursday, December 5, 2013

Celebrating neuro-diversity

I like this catchphrase, feels good to think we can celebrate how different our children are, how their reality is so different from the norm, how their quirky personality can outshine the neuro-typical child.
The past few days have been hard. Zoé is the star person in the classroom this week as we celebrated my baby turning 6.
I worked in the classroom on Monday and left with a bittersweet after taste. Seeing Zoé among her peers highlighted once again how different she is and how indifferent most of them are to her and her challenges.
How can some children be so mean.
Yes, bullying is out and in full force.
Zoé's supposedly "best friend" has been giving her a hard time..."Shut your mouth, I am sick of it!", "Can you eat properly?, "I am having a play date with so and so, and you are NOT invited!"...for some odd reason mean girls work like magnets and Zoé just follows the "dictator" around, wanting to be accepted, to be valued for who she is, to simply be friends.
My mama bear instinct just comes right out and I hurt inside. I feel for Zoé, I can just see what we are going to have to face.
I hadn't seen this coming, or I didn't want to project myself. Zoé is such a love bug, a warm and fuzzy little girl who is confronted to mean spirited kids who don't know what empathy is.
Oh wait a second, let me rephrase this,  Zoé doesn't need empathy from her peers, she is bright and joyful and doesn't act out with tantrums, hardly ever cries, after each fall she simply stands up and says "Shake it off!"
She is conquering the world in her own way, but we need to teach her self-advocacy.
The mean girl says something ugly to Zoé and our little bug tells her in response:"But we can still be friends, right?".
and I want to scream, NO, you don't want to be friends, this girl is a not meant to be a friend. I want Zoé to fend for herself, but I am torn as I want to chime in and tell her what to say, and how to act.
It hurts.
Le Gâteau!

See maman, I can close my mouth!

Flying high above the Zoo

Playing golf with Daddy-O

Zoo Fun

Last night of Hanukkah, Zoé lights the Menorah

Hannukah gifts: Caline et Touffy