Children: Is there anything more horrifying?

August 11, 2009 at 12:03 pm (Uncategorized)

I am still waiting on Harper Collins’ reply to my young adult novel. The longer I wait (the time they said is now about a week ago) the better my chances – because a “Yes” takes longer than a “No”. My chances of getting that book published are significantly better than my chances of becoming a twitter celebrity and getting publication that way.

There’s not much more pathetic than an unpublished writer. (I already hear the voices of my friends raised to say that they’re MUCH more pathetic than me.) All those hours to create a gift no-one actually wants.

*topic change*

Today I mediated in a fight and had both parties (two children) blaming me by the end. Which is technically fine, since I know (a) It was a fight that needed mediation – a rare thing, but true in this case – and I was the only other person around (b) since they blame me for everything, they’re friends again (c) It ended the way it needed to, with the victim’s safety given back to her.

But I feel hideous – together they accused me of mistreating a child. Just the thought makes me feel sick. (Sure, in my teaching days, I sometimes made kids cry – that’s different. Unfortunately it’s a side effect of our school system.)

But I’ve been thinking about teenagers lately, and how one reason teen life is so difficult is that you simply have no scale to measure things by – if you feel sick, you really might be dying. If you’re in love, you’ve genuinely never felt that way before. Later on in life, you can recognise more accurately the severity of your problems. And me getting blamed for a badly upset child isn’t that big a deal. I’m only upset because it’s one of my nightmare scenarios (if it really was my fault, I mean), and I’m not good at sorting out fact from fiction if anyone says anything bad about me. As long as it’s not real (and possibly even then, since everyone makes mistakes and no-one was permanently hurt), there’s no problem.

Children scare me. They’re too important to mess up, and I mess up a lot of things.

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