Broken bones, abrasions, cuts, scrapes, concussions, sexual violations, emotional wounds. This and so much more, only this isn’t a description of crimes against people in third world, developing countries. These occurrences happen here, and often, they are plaguing children here in the U.S. in high numbers. Our states, cities, neighborhoods, homes. Right after high school, I knew I wanted to teach History! Who we are is what we came from, knowing the stories, the truth the events that bring us to the present day. My mother was a teacher, her stories about teaching were never about the curriculum or structure, but the involvement and the nurturing position she played in these children’s lives. Oddly enough having a mother so aware of the needs of safe spaces for children, I grew up with an abusive stepdad. So the teacher my mother was, were the exact teachers that helped me through my life. I wanted to be that for another child. A space of refuge for a heart ignored and a small soul broken.
April, in addition to it being a month to support Autism, which is also very important, as children with disabilities receive higher chances of being abused, it’s also a month we bring Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness to the surface, which is where it should always be. If you would just sit and think about the best and worst parts of your childhood, we could remember who was there and the feelings we had in those hopeless moments. If you have ever suffered from abuse WHY is always your first question, as a child and still later as an adult. What if as a society we could ask not only WHY but HOW? If you question it then you can get to the root of it.
My switch from History to Human Development was not a drastic change, because History is the basis for the WHY and HOW of my Human Development focus. What happened in these situations where children were abused, what happened to their abusers, neurological or environmental contributing factors or both. How can we work on prevention not just the aftershocks of this earthquake. How can we stop putting band aids on these issues. I did want to teach, to help children escape and feel love and safety at least at school if they didn’t at home. I now want to teach families on how to help our children before they arrive. We were all once children this issue isn’t for just parents and educators but everyone. We all have to do our best in building our villages.