How do you know?

It’s not always easy to make the right decision.  What is the right decision? How do you figure it out?

I’ve got my Golden Rules. 

Rules can be annoying (like when you need to get a building manager’s permission to have a pet in your own flat!!) but they do offer a certain fairness; in theory are all treated equally.  

Family rules can be useful too so that everyone knows the lines in the sand. They’re The Code you live by.

When The Kids were younger we created (at their suggestion) a poster of rules that we all contributed to [and we all had to live by].  As The Kids got older they were able to understand that you don’t need to list so many because having a few good ones covers everything. 

Golden Rule 1

Everyone is different; even if you look the same you likely have different preferences.  That does not mean some of us are wrong-just that we are not the same.   I have never understood why some people have such hate for others… that hurts everyone – including the one doing the hating.

Let’s be realistic, if everyone was the same the world would be pretty boring.  We would not have the innovation that we crave or even different flavours and colours.  Can you imagine a world without a good curry?  Or a gorgeous roast beef dinner? What about pistachio ice cream?

Sadly not everyone lives by this one. 

Different skin colour, different religions, different cultures… we are the same on the inside.


Golden Rule 2

It doesn’t matter the issue, if you are truthful then you give yourself a fighting chance of sorting out whatever it is.  It’s not just about children being honest with parents [or parents being honest with children].  It’s about trusting each other with the truth.

Since we withdrew The Kids from traditional schooling I have noticed they are much more comfortable admitting to not knowing something.  I like to think that our attitude of not being ashamed when we don’t know something has had some part to play.

Trust me, you’ll be glad when your kids are older and still coming to you with their sensitive questions. 

Truth telling may start small [like not knowing  something] but that leads on to the big things- that’s when you realise how very important it is to be trusted with the truth.


Golden Rule 3

Does this one really need an explanation?  Small things, like a smile, can change a person’s day.

I have had some really tough times and I have gotten through them with the help and kindness of strangers.

When I was pregnant I had a few weeks of serious nausea and I remember getting off the train at London Bridge station and feeling like I was going to throw up; I felt green- I probably looked green.  I sat on a bench praying for the feeling to ease and a very many people [on their way to work] stopped to make sure I was ok.  They didn’t know I was pregnant but they could see that I was not well. Small as the gesture was it gave me comfort.

On another occasion I was on the bus with a screaming toddler and there were a few people sending nasty glares my way.  I was feeling so self-conscious and was trying my best to get Baby to settle but it was not working.  A lovely elderly lady smiled at me and said “just ignore them, he’s only a baby” and those few words coupled with a warm smile made all the difference.

 I can never figure out why more people don’t understand this. 

Kindness is a gift that blesses both the giver and the receiver.

Last week L took her sweets outside to share with her friends. She put the pencil case [of sweets] down to play and when she went back to it it was empty.  L was so shocked and hurt.

Turns out one of the boys took them and he ate them all.  Every single one. 

L wanted to hit him.  She explained that to me but went on to say that she chose not to.  [Proud Mama moment there.]

At first I wondered if it was a very young child who thought that he could have them but this child is 8 years old so definitely knows better!

L was so upset.  She cried and cried; she just couldn’t understand why he would have done such a mean thing.  

And you’d never guess what she said when she calmed down.

“Next time I’m only giving him one!”

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