Songs for my daughter – 2

I’m currently reading a book called Neurotribes – the synposis of which is ‘ What is autism: a devastating developmental disorder, a lifelong disability, or a naturally occurring form of cognitive difference akin to certain forms of genius?’

I want to believe it’s the latter, or at least that the ability to think and behave differently is a bonus rather than a curse.

“In the past 40 years,” Silberman writes, “some members of this tribe have migrated from the margins of society to the mainstream … The kids formerly ridiculed as nerds and brainiacs have become the architects of our future.”

Read more about the book here:
http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/aug/29/autism-spectrum-steve-silberman-neurotribes-legacy-autism-people-think-differently

My daughter is 8. She doesn’t know what day it will be tomorrow. She can’t write her name, zip up her coat or use a knife and fork. Sometimes she mixes up her tenses or calls something by the wrong word. She is completely oblivious to popular culture and wouldn’t know Harry Styles from Harry Enfield. She couldn’t even hope to work out how to play Minecraft. And by the end of each day she looks like she has been dragged through a hedge backwards then covered in tomato sauce.

My daughter is amazing.

 

She is the most positive person I have ever met. Her favourite weather is rain. Although she also really likes sun, wind and snow. She finds babies and small children completely irresistible and insists on stroking their hair or giving them a kiss. She adores frogs, lizards and worms and can tame a house fly or butterfly to sit on her hand and be carried around like a pet. She has the most brilliant imagination and can amuse herself for hours with nothing more than a baby wipe and a free leaflet for an amusement park that we haven’t been to. She can name all of the My Little Ponies.

She is fearless and doesn’t let anything get in her way. She has fans in every year group in school – she often comes home with a drawing someone has done for her or a keyring clipped on to her book bag. She doesn’t know or care about fashion and she’s more than happy to get wet or filthy in order to get the most out of an experience. She can’t gossip or be bitchy, she doesn’t fall out with people or make fun of anyone.

She doesn’t moan or whine. She sees the beauty in everything. She is optimistic and ambitious and every day she has a new idea about what she will be when she grows up…doctor, diver, dancer. Her favourite phrase is “I can do that!” and her second favourite is “I’m really good at…”. She is tolerant, kind, funny and beautiful.

If she had a motto it would be ‘Carpe Diem’. But I’m not sure she will ever master English let alone Latin.

Why does our society feel that her weaknesses are more important and significant than her strengths? She didn’t do SATs, so she doesn’t even have a record of how poorly she is achieving at the standard targets. She’s off the bottom of the chart but in a recent RE session, when her class were all asked to think about what communities they belonged to everyone trotted out the usual ‘football team’, ‘brownies’, ‘school’….she was the only one to say ‘my family’.

 

 

I always assumed that Labi Siffre’s song ‘(Something Inside) So Strong’ was about racism but apparently it was also about Labi’s feelings of oppression growing up as a young gay man. Actually it doesn’t really matter what he was thinking when he wrote this beautiful song – it’s a perfect anthem for anyone who is different or marginalized.

“Brothers and sisters
When they insist we’re just not good enough
Well we know better
Just look ‘em in the eyes and say
We’re gonna do it anyway”

We are going to do it anyway….x

“(Something Inside) So Strong” – Labi Siffre
The higher you build your barriers
The taller I become
The farther you take my rights away
The faster I will run
You can deny me
You can decide to turn your face away
No matter, cos there’s….
Something inside so strong
I know that I can make it
Tho’ you’re doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone
Oh no, something inside so strong
Oh oh oh oh oh something inside so strong
The more you refuse to hear my voice
The louder I will sing
You hide behind walls of Jericho
Your lies will come tumbling
Deny my place in time
You squander wealth that’s mine
My light will shine so brightly
It will blind you
Cos there’s……
Something inside so strong
I know that I can make it
Tho’ you’re doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone
Oh no, something inside so strong
Oh oh oh oh oh something inside so strong
Brothers and sisters
When they insist we’re just not good enough
When we know better
Just look ’em in the eyes and say
I’m gonna do it anyway [x4]
Something inside so strong
And I know that I can make it
Tho’ you’re doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone
Oh no, something inside so strong
Oh oh oh oh oh something inside so strong
Brothers and sisters
When they insist we’re just not enough
When we know better
Just look ’em in the eyes and say
I’m gonna do it anyway [x4]
Because there’s something inside so strong
And I know that I can make it
Tho’ you’re doing me, so wrong
Oh no, something inside so strong
Oh oh oh oh oh something inside so strong

Today’s earworm: what do you think?

Last night’s different dinner score: 3 😦

Pink Pear Bear
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One Comment Add yours

  1. themotherhub says:

    your daughter sounds amazing x

    Liked by 1 person

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