Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Just Hanging Around

In the past week I have come face to face with a label I hate. In fact, I can't even utter the words without doing this little shudder inside. I was at the barber shop with Luke last week and one of the barbers said to his client "I can't believe you have to work with those retards". Then I was out in a store and someone referred to something (an object) as retarded to his friend and they agreed. This is slang that I used to use. When growing up these were common phrases and put downs when fighting with other kids. Seemingly harmless words that were not really called out as being harmful until the dawn of being 'Politically Correct' and diversity training. I know that phrases like this will continue to be used by well meaning, even caring people. But when you have a piece of paper in your daughter's file that states that she is Mentally Retarded. Hearing phrases like that are hard to take.

I am not confrontational by nature. I'm the kind of person who stews about an encounter or an opportunity to confront and comes up with a great argument (in my head) hours or even days later. I am just not a fighter. But, should I be? Are these chances for me to educate others on how harmful that phrase used so carelessly can be? Or is this just awareness for me. So when I feel stronger about it and less emotional I can educate those around me. It sure has got me thinking. Especially when I read the President's chief of staff made similar comments...


Every once in a while we will find Grace like this. For no apparent reason, she just hangs out in this position.

Well, yesterday her brothers decided to play along with Grace. First it was John (notice his rib cage, I'm not sure how this is possible since he eats constantly).

And then Luke had to get involved too.

There is never a dull moment, when you're just hanging around here!!


Anna said...

Oh yes I agree with you totally about using that phrase! I don't even like writing it! My brother has Down Syndrome so it does grate on me when I hear people talk like that too.

And what gorgeous photos...very cute:)

Take care,


Hannah said...

I am sorry you have had to run into those people.

I love the pictures of the kids, they look like they are doing Yoga! So funny!

Amanda said...

lol cute pics! Have been thinking about you lots lately! Will get your cookies in the mail today. I just hope you dont totally dislike them. It was a new experience for me this time and I tried some new things and I am not quite sure... but.. if you hate them I will just refund your money ok? (actually I am not cashing your check till you get them just in case) So be honest!

Gardenia said...

maybe it's meditative, soothing !! I remember growing up and hearing and probably also using that horrible description of retarded. now we are wiser. It's a shame that adults still use the word. and children should be taught too that it's not charitable to use that word in any situation.