How do we forgive those who hurt our loved ones? It certainly isn’t easy. I am fortunate in that I had just finished reading Immaculee Ilibagiza’s book Left to Tell at the time I learned about the bullies who hurt my child otherwise I might have reacted the same way as the dad in Florida who stormed the bus. I also got to hear Immaculee in person and meet her face to face during this time. She is a truly wonderful person and she inspired me to learn to forgive the bullies.
Still for me forgiveness is a work in progress especially when I hear about other kids being hurt by bullies. For those who don’t know Immaculee’s story, she survived the slaughter in Rwanda in 1994. She and one of her brothers, who was out of the country, are the only survivors from her family. While in hiding she overheard the murders of her younger brother describing his death as they called for her so they could kill her too. Yet, she forgave them as she realized that remaining angry would hurt her. When I met her, what struck me the most is how serene she is and the fact that she is clear that forgiveness does not mean forgetting.
I hope in some small measure my book will inspire someone to learn to forgive without forgetting and maybe they’ll inspire someone else to do the same. Let’s all really work at passing this message on to others. Thanks again for listening to me as I blog.
D. S. Walker
Kids, who appear different, still have much to offer the world if schools teach tolerance of differences instead of turning the other way when children are mean. I started this project after it came to my attention that most of the girl’s book series at the time were actually about girls being mean to be popular. Since then Gossip Girl which is all about girls being mean has been turned into a TV show and now Pretty Little Liars has been too. The least harmful of the books was The Clique books and these were made into a movie.
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This blog is not about pointing fingers or placing blame; its is about educating our youth. Kindness to others is all too often one of the values that some of today’s young people seem to be missing for whatever reason. Unfortunately, some kids don’t seem to understand that being mean has consequences so we all need to work together to make sure they understand. Rather than punishing kids after someone gets hurt, let’s teach tolerance of differences so no one else gets harmed.
Boys are victims too and sometimes they are even victimized by the mean girls, but Delightfully Different is about a girl. My next story will be about Mia’s brother and it will address some of the issues boys face.
This story isn’t about anger; it is about learning to forgive intolerance while teaching tolerance. Healing of the injury is not complete without forgiveness.
God bless our children and our educators!
While all of the characters in my book exist only in the author’s imagination, being misunderstood, misdiagnosed and mistreated by others when you have differences is real. People with a learning disability and/or a neurological disorder, such as Mia’s sensory sensitivity with features of Asperger’s syndrome may find it hard to recognize when others mistreat them until things escalate. I want to educate the world about the delightful traits many of these kids have and encourage them to standup for themselves, but also to encourage all of you to standup for them too.
Remember, every life has a purpose. We are all unique in some way, even if we do not admit it. Be grateful for who you are and for who your children are. Help them to learn to cope in this world. Use whatever resources are necessary to help them. However, do not try to make them like the rest of the world. Help them to be proud of who they are.