Naming babies is hard! Our new little guy is the first one we’ve had to name, though we’ve talked a lot about baby names over the years. And I’ve decided it’s just too much responsibility. Really, I wish we lived in a society where we picked a baby name and then later, at 10 or 13 or 15, in some important coming of age ritual, a child received a new adult name.
Up until now we’ve mostly imagined girl names–maybe because it’s easier. So when we found out we were having a boy, we started researching. Continue reading
Some folks I know are posting on this critique and this follow up post criticizing Brene Brown’s work by Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg. Cohen-Rottenberg details the many ways oppression undermines connection–homophobia, sexism, ableism, and more and the social forces which work to give some people more of a sense of worthiness and others less and concludes that for some people the courage to be wholehearted is not enough to create connection with others. Yes. Yes. Yes. The “others” are not always there waiting to reach out, it’s true. And there are some that will never be ready to connect with us, too stuck in their own self-reinforcing narrow world views. And unfortunately, some of those people hold a lot of power, it’s true.
I spend my professional time reflecting with others on ethics and how to be good people in the world. We encourage each other to live our values of compassion and love daily even with strangers.
But, I confess, I am not doing so well with all of my neighbors. It’s one thing to be compassionate and kind when someone else’s actions have no real effect on me. It’s another when I’ve got skin in the game. Continue reading
This week on babble Carolyn Castiglia asks “Are we really supposed to feel sorry for a 42-year-old woman who is doing IVF when she could just adopt?”
There are so many problems with this. Let’s start with the compassion piece. Yes. Yes, you’re supposed to feel compassion for anyone who is suffering, even if they may have made decisions that have contributed to their suffering. Who among us hasn’t realized that we could have prevented our suffering? Did that make the suffering any less painful? Continue reading
After Baby S. left it was just us and Baby M. She grew and thrived and we loved her. There are many stories to tell, of course, of her impish curious self, of signing, of walking, of getting into mischief, of her first words, of her love of berries, water, and helping. There were also a lot of hard things. It was hard every week to strap her into a social worker’s car as she cried. Visits with mom and dad were hard for a long time. Dad appeared out of nowhere and she was really frightened of him. And the drives in the strange car–too often a new worker–were clearly frightening too. The social workers assured us she stopped crying, but when I picked her up, for months, she clung to me and bawled. So, we’d sit in the parking lot until she was ready for her carseat. Continue reading