The Rose That Grew From Concrete

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words hurtI’d just left the office to grab some lunch from a one of the many food trucks downtown. As I was walking up the street I heard a woman shouting, “If you don’t move your f@#king ass. Sh#t! Let me have to tell your dumb ass again and I’m going to beat ya little ass!” At that moment I turned to see a “young lady” (please note the quotation marks) in her late twenties pulling the arm of a roughly 5-year-old girl–who obviously was walking too slowly for her mother. Honestly, I was praying that at any second a lightning bolt would sear the afternoon sky and the woman would implode where she stood, leaving only the soles of her fake Ugg boots melted on the sidewalk.

 

I couldn’t control my disgust and judging by the look on the mother’s face, she had noticed. But staying true to her character (ignorant woman with no home training), she elegantly mumbled, “You need to mind your f@cking business” then she snatched her daughter by the shoulder of her coat and marched her across the street. I felt heat race through my body. Any rational human being without children could see this was wrong, but now that I have a child, my need to protect is near primal. I wanted to hold the little girl close and tell her how beautiful and smart she is, how no one has the right to hurt her with their words…I wanted to tell her that everything is going to be okay. But, is it?

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My S Dot…

I can’t be the only person who has a story like this. More and more I see parents treating their children like stray dogs, and it’s heartbreaking. And if they aren’t treating their babies like after-thoughts, they’re treating each other with no regard. I can drive through my city at any time of the day and find at least one guy looking like “Lord knows what” smoking a blunt with his toddler at his heels, or find a woman on her cell talking about “everything but” while her daughter is sitting close by listening.

Do you know the reason I don’t like the song “I Believe The Children Are Our Future”? It’s because I’ve seen enough of these poor children to wish the Mayan’s were better at math.

How can we expect children to do better if they don’t know better?

Yet, when I’m discouraged, I am reminded that as long as we believe there is a power greater than ourselves, nothing against us will prosper. And for every parent who makes me hang my head and weep, there are parents like those I’ve met through Mommy’s Open Diary who make me hold my head high and smile. Children are resilient beings and they are influenced by everything around them. They are able to see past the darkness and imagine something better. With this understanding, I am going to continue praying and focus on being a good parent to my little boy–and hope that I can elevate those around me by example.

My diary entry is this, “Long live the rose that grew from concrete when no one else ever cared.” (Tupac Shakur)

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