Another Spectrum

Personal ramblings and rants of a somewhat twisted mind


1 Comment

Five years already?

I’m not the most regular, proficient or prolific blogger, but I’m surprised that today marks the 5th anniversary of Another Spectrum. When I started this blog, my intent was to use it as a platform for discussing  the autism spectrum (hence the blog title) and migraine with occasional detours into other topics. But it my life is more than these two conditions, and it seems that it is the same with my blogging interests.

I wonder what interests I’ll blog about over the next five years?


1 Comment

“You and mum help make this happen”

These were the words my daughter used to accompany a video clip sent to me via WhatsApp earlier today. To me they are very humbling words indeed. This is not because in any way we were directly involved in facilitating “this” to happen, although perhaps there is an indirect link in that we provided child care and dog sitting services at times to enable her to make “this” happen.

Instead I would like to think that what she is showing appreciation for is in regards to the values we encouraged her to develop, and which she expresses – participation in “this” being but one example. I’m uncomfortable using the word “proud” for my part in her development because it can be used in ways that are closer to boasting, and I don’t want to imply that our daughter is who she is simply because we as her parents made her that way.

I’m convinced that the saying “It takes a village to raise a child” is accurate, and as parents, we are just one of the many influences that have played out in our children’s and grandchildren’s lives. And even in saying that, we have to acknowledge that we too are products of the environment in which we developed, including parents, whānau, and the wider community. So I cannot claim be the originator of any of the values my offspring hold dear. At best, I’ve been a conduit, and perhaps, only in a very small way, an enabler.

I acknowledge that I have often fallen short as a parent, and it has been my children who have shown me how to be a better parent and human being, and for that I will be forever grateful. And yet our daughter takes a moment to say “You and mum help make this happen”. I can’t find a word or phrase that describes my reaction to her statement, but I hope the sentiments are clear enough from what I have written here.


As to the “this” referred to above, I have been contemplating whether or not to identify the occasion. My reason is that I’m somewhat anonymous on this blog. Although there’s enough information available for anyone to discover my real identity if they had a mind to, it would take a small amount of work to do so. And the possibility of someone who knows me stumbling across this blog is extremely small.

Experience during my formative years taught me to be cautious about how I expressed myself, and I learnt the hard way that there are boundaries (which I still can’t always recognise) that can’t be crossed without very unpleasant consequences. Although I believe our society is far more tolerant and liberal today, the caution within me remains. The relative anonymity provided by this blog allows me to express views that I would be reluctant to share in the “real world”.

But in light of the fact that “this” is a public expression opposing the very thing that makes me so cautious, I cannot help but feel duty-bound to share it here, even at the risk of making my identity easier to discover. I could perhaps not mention that our daughter identifies herself by name and role in one of the Facebook video clips linked to below, but I want to publicly acknowledge that one of my greatest teachers about life has been my daughter, which is why I find her statement humbling.

“This” refers to a local street party declaring that bullying is not acceptable. It is never “character building”. Its only function is to cause harm.

   


3 Comments

What the ????

Some people have a really warped sense of reality. I just stumbled upon a WordPress blog under the “New Zealand” tag claiming that the Christchurch terrorist attack is a hoax. To make it even more disgusting he’s included an animated GIF image of several seconds of shooting inside the Mosque, which is supposed to prove his claim. Unlike a video it plays the moment the article is opened – the image is near the top of the page and can’t be avoided. I’ve reported it to WordPress. My hope is that WordPress take down not only the article, but also the account.

Update (19:03 NZDT): I’ve just realised that you don’t need to open the article. The image plays in a search preview list. Everyone including kids can see the animation. As of this moment, it’s been up 12 hours.

Update (31/03/19 06:14 NZDT): The site has finally been taken down. Yay!