Saturday, 3 October 2009
Bringing The Colour Back.
My son has lived with me since he was twelve. My son, 'my little boy', is almost twenty-one. As a single dad challenging his mental health concerns and trying to be a good father; it has not always been easy. Yet, the responsibilities of raising my child has been very much the catalyst that enabled me to be strong for him, be strong for me.
Like any other parent, it has not always been a happy and blissful relationship. During those times I could have really used the input of a partner to back me up. No doubt, during our times of conflict, my son would have benefited from the opinion of a third party. Still, eventually, we work it out and our differences are resolved. Ah, the life of a single dad and his little boy who is now a young man. I have tried to instil in him that he should always try to maintain an air of dignity and use diplomatic assertiveness in his encounters with the outside world. I told him that when he signed on for benefits that he must realise that those in the Job Centre have more than likely had their fair share of unruly, unreasonable customers. "Son", I said, "if you go there with a calm, pleasant demeanour, you should notice a more positive outcome."
After much hassle, he finally got his benefits. What this entailed was for him to travel in on the bus every two weeks to sign on. One morning, about a month ago, he left the house in plenty of time to go on the bus and sign on. Unfortunately, due to road works, the bus got to his destination late. When he went to sign on, he was ten minutes late. Instead of making allowances for this, the people at the Job Centre told him, in an apparently dismissive manner, that he would have to come back several hours later that day. So instead of hanging around for several hours, wandering the streets of Stoke on Trent, he came home. Upon his repeat trip on the bus, when he arrived, to finally sign on, he was handed a written warning for being late that morning. The situation that occurred is hardly conducive to creating a positive environment. My son, already struggling with the fact he had lost his job, did not deserve this. Indeed, nobody deserves this type of treatment.
Yes, these have indeed been some tough, challenging times. For quite some time, his bedroom has been in need of a fresh coat of paint. The room had become dull and lifeless. Perhaps a fresh, bright coat of paint would do the trick.
I managed to persuade him to come with me to the 'DIY' shop and purchase some tins of paint. At last, a positive focus.
I will now conclude this posting on a very positive note. His friends have realised that there bubbly, lively mate had been down for quite some time. So his friends, his true friends, friends who have been there for each other, through the good times and the bad times; rallied round and came over to help him paint his bedroom. How heart warming, how inspirational. Heck, even his dog, Penny, wanted to be a part of the action.
So by bringing the colour back to a dull and dreary room, may just be of some help. Help to move on from the dark and gloomy times that have surrounded his life.
To my son, my 'little boy', my young man, Tristan; "You're going to be okay. Your dad loves you and the power of positive thinking will find a way."