"It's kinda nice to work the floor since the divorce
I've been enjoying both my Christmases and my birthday cakes
And taking drugs and making love at far too young an age
And they never checked to see my grades
What a fool I'd be to start complaining
What about taking this empty cup and filling it up
With a little bit more of innocence, I haven't had enough
It's probably because when you're young
It's okay to be easily ignored
I'd love to believe it was all about love for a child" -Love For a Child (Jason Mraz)
These are just a few parts from this intense song. I listened to it today, and it breaks my heart every time I hear it because of its truth. Teachers know this truth more than anyone. (Obviously I am speaking in regards to the line about grades.) Why doesn't that one student ever get their homework done? Why is it that we know he or she has the capability of getting amazing grades if a little effort fueled the already existing intelligence, and, yet, he or she is failing...everything? Because of this simple fact: parents have an impact.
Some parents just don't seem to care enough to use this amazing gift for their child's benefit. They let precious hours go to waste when they could be spending time with their child working on homework, discussing the importance of education, or helping their child study for tests. I'm sorry if you are a single parent with a job. I'm sorry if you are tired when you get home from work. I'm sorry if it is easier for you to flip on the T.V. and relax, letting your child do whatever he or she chooses, homework or play. However, in most cases, you chose to have that child (even if you chose to have sex prior to marriage/without protection- that was a choice).
If you did not choose to have the child, do not ever regret the fact that God blessed you with one. God will never give you something in life that you cannot handle without His help. Therefore, do your absolute best with that which God has provided you. If you cannot, to put it bluntly... loving parents with fertility issues want to adopt. If you cannot take care of your child, the most selfless decision would be to give that child up for adoption. This will allow your child to have a better life.
Now to discuss the first line... the one involving divorce. If your husband/wife cheats on you or abuses you, please get out. There are issues in marriage that can be so painful that they actually can affect your child more than divorcing. However, an irreconcilable difference= easy, fake way out. Any difference can be irreconcilable if you choose to stick your feet in the sand and make it that way. Good grief! People can get divorced over the way they put the toilet paper (which, by the way, the CORRECT way is over...just sayin')! However, people have, by the grace of God, worked through serious issues like finance issues and child raising differences. It can be done!
Sorry to say... because of divorce, child raising becomes more difficult, thus parents give up. "Taking drugs and making love at far too young an age": this line really gets me. I could never understand what it is like to grow up without the influence of both genders, both parents. True, there are children who grow up in incredibly stable homes, with two incredibly stable parents who still make choices that ruin their own lives. True, also, that there are children who have messed up lives and grow up to be wonderful, successful people. There are always exceptions. However, I will say that a bad childhood, a broken childhood, can cause serious issues.
The satire in the second line is beautifully heart-wrenching and painfully true. No child would prefer two Christmases and two birthday celebrations to two parents at one Christmas and one birthday celebration. To another child in an unbroken home, this may seem a lucky, even unfair situation: getting more gifts! However, my fondest memories are long drives to rehearsals with my mom and playing catch in the yard with my dad... not items that my parents bought me.
Children need more innocence. Children need to be able to go outside and play without fear of being violated by some sick adult trying to take that innocence away. Children need to be able to play video games without the games exposing them to excessive violence that can be found in the real, adult world. Many games even expose students to real-world sexuality. Granted, these children are getting the games from someone, some adult, but I suppose that is what makes it even sadder. Children should be able to go to school without being tempted by drugs, without feeling pressured to have sex with their boyfriends or girlfriends. Heck! They shouldn't even feel the need to have a boyfriend or girlfriend. But wouldn't you? I mean... otherwise you are a loser, right?
Children need to stop being ignored... this doesn't mean "children's rights"... that is only a way to ignore them more. You see, when we give children (beings whom God has specifically instructed to obey older beings by whom they are being raised) "rights", we are treating them like adults. Not only is this not not Biblical, it is illogical. However, I digress. To return to the "ignoring" point, it is making us ignore them more. After all, if children are treated like adults, they get to make their own decisions. If they get to make their own decisions, we don't need to take the time to think of what will be best for them, so we can ignore them more. We ignore adults many times! Why? Because they can make their own decisions and fend for themselves. Giving children excessive "rights", places them in an adulthood level. If adults are ignored, and children are now "adults"... children are ignored.
They need innocence! They need a lack of rights! They need to be told what to do because they are CHILDREN. Should a child be treated horribly and lack human rights? Absolutely not. However, the less freedom we give them, the less bad, uneducated, and naive choices they will make. We can ignore adults because by the time they have become adults, they are too intelligent (and too stubborn) to try to train further. Children are still learning. Give them that time... and take the time to realize when they need you to educate them further on something. I promise you, if you don't take the time, someone else will. In this day and age, you do not want that.
As I said, this song breaks my heart as a teacher, but it also breaks my heart simply as a woman who knows she will someday have children. If a song can stir up emotions and reflections such as these, it must be good. It is a sad, but great song. "Love For a Child" by Jason Mraz. Now that I have poured out my feelings on it, check it out for yourself and let me know what you think.