Raise your voice, move your feet


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I heard this quote as part of a talk about poverty – a very complex, serious and devastating issue for many people in our world today. However as I’ve been mulling it over as our blog buddies title this week I’ve not been able to get away from some very much more mundane thoughts on this.

For those parents amongst you – you will recognise this scene I’m sure. You’re sat on your sofa after a long day enjoying a cup of tea (or whatever beverage you drink) and watching the TV (or whatever makes you relax) and you hear a loud voice in the distance somewhere “Mum, Mum, Muuuuuum” now you think well I can either raise my voice too and scream the place down in response or I could get off my backside and move my feet. If you’re anything like me you eventually are the one who has to move to go to the calling voice – why is that? Why do we feel that we always have to go to others? The problem is that you know even if you answer their call by shouting “what?” back you will probably end up getting up anyway.

As parents we have a role to meet our children’s needs – their basic needs and much more. When you become a parent through whatever means, you’ve very rarely given a comprehensive guide on what to do – how to meet the ever increasing needs and demands of children. Do you go to them every time they cry as a baby? What kind of food and when should you feed them? How do you make sure they learn to not be bullied or in fact not be a bully? When do you talk to them about relationships and sex? How do you protect them from all the things you wished hadn’t happened to you – and can you? Should you? Aaahh I can feel the stress building up in me as I write this….it is the most challenging, perplexing, demanding, exhausting, rewarding, exhilarating and important job you will ever do in the world. Creating, influencing and raising a child to become a well-rounded adult who in turn can contribute to society in their own way. Amazing and terrifying at the same time.

For those who read my blogs regularly you will know that adoption is very close to my heart, not only because it’s our experience of parenting but also as it’s my work and passion right now. It can be a sobering job sometimes. I sit on a local adoption panel which can be distressing – when you read the lives of these very vulnerable children and their birth parents who have very often had difficult childhoods themselves, and then what a privilege to be involved in that moment when a family is created through adoption – when parents raise their voices in celebration and move their feet along an incredible journey that I know will take them on a roller coaster of emotions.

So next time I hear my children scream “Mummmmm” I think I will try and remember that whether I raise my voice too or move my feet I would not be without them and the incredible privilege it is to be involved in this wonderful experience of adoption.

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