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On June 16th, the Many Shades blog will be closed.
The authors thank you for your readership and hope you will come visit them at their personal sites via the links to the left.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Time to Reflect

As children growing into adulthood, we are programmed to take things for granted. I sat here for the past week watching the Christmas movies on the Family channel and the Hallmark channel. As usual the protagonist has hidden issues that aren't portrayed until the end of the movie. This person goes trough a number of trials and tribulations, sometimes having to be selfish in order to gain what he needs to fulfill whatever it is he or she is missing in their near lonely lives.

Take the movie “Elf” for instance...a child is raised in the North Pole by elves and learns in his adult life that he belongs elsewhere...a story of adoption and reunion.

The movie “The Snow Globe” one of my favorites. A single girl whose mother interferes in her life and wants her to marry. In the process she rents an apartment down the hall from her daughters in hopes of them getting together. The daughter finds herself inside the snow globe where she falls for one of the figurines that comes to life, when back in reality her true love is waiting...a typical Cinderella story.

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas”...a child who was different and bullied grows up with hatred and ruins everyones holiday by getting even...story of being bullied.

Then you have the story of “Ritchie Rich.” a spoiled rotten brat whose used to getting his way with anything he wants.

I noticed that only at Christmas time these movies are shown...if they had shows on television like this all year round maybe our minds would have been programmed for unselfishness?

I watched the educational growth of children for years as a Teacher. I am a firm believer in “children live what they learn.” I think about everything I taught my students and everything the parents removed because they believed in spoiling rather then discipline. It's the way we are raised that places us in certain categories as adults. The way we are raised follows us throughout our lives and in our careers, and how we raise our own children.

I sat here thinking about my life and just how grateful I am to have had what I have in my life. Even through all my heartache and loss. Having spent that little bit of time I had with the ones who are now gone will last me a lifetime. Having the ones that are left are a blessing. So this holiday season and for that matter all year through, try to remember what you do have and try to be thankful for it instead of taking it for granted because it can be gone in a flash.

AP Miller


Erin Sinclair said...

There is an overabundance of giving and a lack of discipline. We have a blame mentality that believes everyone else must raise our children. While I love the idea of all of us as a "clan" protecting and raising children to be viable, productive members of society, somewhere along the way that concept became a shirking of responsibility, not a sharing of the load, so to speak.

Something is happening to the souls of some children born in the last 20 years or so and it is frightening to me. It's as if the gates of Hell have opened and released its denizens to be reborn in the innocent. I site several school shootings and gang related drive-by shootings as some examples. The most heinous one to date in my opinion, the 8 year old boy who kept a list of every spanking he received, at the 1000th spanking, he would seek punishment against his father according to this child's journal and he did--by putting two bullets in the man's head as well as his roommate's, then lied about it to investigators in the same tone of denial the average child uses to say he did not take a forbidden cookie out of the chocolate chipd cookie jar, all the while the chocolate is staining his hands and face. I did not agree however, the tactics police officers used to retrieve the "truth" from the child. Their bungling will release what I believe to be a very dangerous adult in the future.

Debby said...

I find children today do not think anything is there fault and that saying I didn't do it makes it true. I am a teacher and students spread rumors that I failed kids because I did not like them rather than say they did not do their work.

Amy S. said...

I love watching all of the Christmas shows.

AP Miller said...

I agree that parents are the responsible party in any issue regarding their children. If what is being taught at school is not redundant at home, and values, morals and rules are not put into place and made law within the boundaries of the home then we as parents have failed our children. I have seen too many parents who work full time jobs and expect a Nanny, a babysitter or a school teacher to raise their children. This will not happen. If a couple decide to have children they had better be prepared for the consequences of raising that child, and to also be prepared to quit their high paying career to stay home with the children until they are eighteen. If they can't afford to have one parent at home to raise a child then they have no business having children. I know this sounds harsh but this is reality. I have said this to many parents in the past and as a Teacher I stand my ground.

The government stepped in and took all the direct harsh discipline away from the parents which in my opinion was an invasion of parenting. Any parent has the right to slap their child for disrespect of their rules and misbehaving. Parents today are more concerned about having their children love them rather then raising them to become healthy and responsible adults. So what happens? They spoil them and would rather go broke doing it.

My mother used to chase me daily with a wooden spoon and put soap in my mouth. I was beaten for being bad, and by my mother doing so I learned to become a respectable adult. I had to put myself through college and buy my own car. I had nothing handed to me. I began working at age fourteen part time after school and had a choice of working or sports. Luckily I was able to do both.

I paid my own way through a local college and sent myself twice more and I'm still attending. So I say to the parents today to stop spoiling and be a parent not a friend.

And to Amy...I love Christmas moves...I
m watching them right now on the Family Channel...

AP Miller

Lynn Crain said...

I love watching Christmas movies and while, I love them a lot, I have to remind myself that they are fiction. When I was a kid, I so wanted my life to run like a movie and sometimes now I find myself wanting the same thing but only because I wanted to get away from my life. Not that I don't love it, I do, but a break every now and then would be great.

Still, I have to agree with you all that we are in a place with the current generation of kids where there is no blame. No one wants to take responsibility for what they should. Instead, it's a period in society where we don't want to blame anyone for anything. But we should ALL learn to be responsible for those things we have caused.

This reminds me of a story I read a year or so ago in the newspaper. A bright, popular 16 yo went out in her BMW and used her Gold Card to purchase alcohol and proceeded to drink it with her friends. On the way home, she ran into the car of another bright, 16 yo. scholarly girl and killed her. Her parents and her were standing in court to determine the crime category the courts would charge her with, DUI & vehicular manslaughter or just manslaughter, when her parents looked at the judge and asked, "She'll still be able to go to Europe with us this summer, right?"

I was floored for a number of reasons. One, who's responsible for this way of thinking? Two, are these parents really this dumb? And I came to realize the basic answers to those questions. One, everyone is responsible for this because we all allowed things to get this bad. Two, yes, some parents are that dumb and can't think outside of their personal box because their child was involved.

I told my kids from the time they were very young: It's better if you tell me what you did wrong because I will be much worse on you than anyone or anything else. And, I will never go to jail for you no matter what. I'm not sure if I'd even pick you up.

And that has been true. There are certain behaviours that I wouldn't tolerate from my kids at all and they know it.

Everyone must take responsibility. Everyone must do their part or society may not survive what is going on. Or if it does, it may not be a society I want to be a part of. That desert isle is looking better and better.

Again, thanks Debby and Amy for being here. We do appreciate it.


Erin Sinclair said...


Please tell me she did some time! Your cover is lovely by the way!


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