Friday, June 19, 2009

uniquely you

Spike was born with a big dark brown birthmark on his neck. His doctor said it won't ever fade or get smaller, it will always stay the size it is in relation to his body. At first I was shocked. I didn't know if I liked it. I didn't want him to have such an obvious birthmark. But as he's grown it's become such a part of him, making his so uniquely him that I can't imagine him with out it. He wouldn't be the same quirky mischievous Spike with out that birthmark. Then this past weekend we went to a party. There was a girl there, about five years old, whose spied his birthmark. "Eewww" she said "what's that?" I looked to where she was pointing and she was pointing straight at his birthmark and my heart sank. This is what I was afraid of. Kids can be so mean. I nicely told her it was his birthmark, that he was born with it. To which she responded "It's weird" and I was at a loss for words. Spike, being little, was completely oblivious to all of this. This little five year old girl went on to point out his birthmark to any other little kid she could show saying things like "look isn't that weird, it's so big." I tried to ignore her, and change the subject but she was relentless. It was so frustrating and for me heartbreaking. I know that there will be other kids that will tease him about his birthmark. Point it out, ask him questions about it. Kids always point out things that are different. Pick at them, and sometimes torment other kids about there differences. I don't want him hurt by all this but I know I can't stop it and he will soon be able to understand that there is something different about him that other kids see. Something that some people think is beautiful, but not everyone.
He's such a silly boy, my hope is I can teach him not to let the comments get to him (like they do me). To just tell anyone who makes a big deal about it what it is in a matter of fact way and then walk away and let it go. To know in his heart who he is and be confidant of that. I hope he feels good about his birthmark, proud of it in fact, knowing that it makes him uniquely him. A big fat angel kiss. My mom use to tell me that all my freckles were angel kisses when I would get upset about them. That the angels just loved me up really good before I was born. When I would get teased about them (I do have A Lot of freckles!) I would hear that in the back of my head, and it always helped me to just let it go. I've even learned to love my freckles now. That's what I hope to pass on to him, something that reminds him that it's okay, that it makes him special and wonderful in the eyes of God and his family and anyone else who loves and cares about him.

It sound silly to be so worried about it, but I truly know how mean kids can be. I was teased relentlessly about the most ridiculous things as a child. It was hard and I suffered almost daily from it. I would come home in tears some days. I'm a sensitive soul, as my children seem to be also. It's good to be sensitive, but you take everything to heart and it sure can make life harder sometimes. I have to figure out how to help him be okay with who he is no matter what others say, in fact I have to help all my children with this, and to stay true to themselves.
In the meantime I need to not let comments from five years old bother me so much!
Oh and below is a picture I took of Spike with his special birthday pancakes (remade). I took Lisa's advice and just did them all over again (because of the whole erasing all my pictures fiasco) and I sure am glad I did. I didn't have the energy to reenact his whole birthday, but this was easy enough.
Isn't he cute?!


Lisa said...

Absolutely loved this post! I agree, the birthmark IS just that, a big fat angel kiss!! He is too darn cute. :) And you redid the pancakes for the camera! Yay! I bet he was thrilled. :) thanks for linking me...I'm all giggly 'cause of it. :) Have a great weekend, we're off to volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House again...I love it. :)

Kat said...


I know how you feel. Tommy had a hemangeoma (I have no idea if I am spelling that right. It is a bright red, raised birth mark that he got after he was born. It did fade and shrink with time, but you can still see it. I tell him it is his kissy mark, so I know where to kiss him (it is on his belly). I also tell him that is how I knew he was my baby and no one elses. He loves calling it his kissy mark.
He probably won't have to deal with teasing (about the birthmark anyway) cuz it is on his belly, but I know how that can be a worry.
But like you said, kids are mean, and if it wouldn't be about a birthmark it would be about something else, ya know? He'll be fine with it, I'm sure. :)

MGM said...

I would just hype up for him the fact that this is something that makes him special and it's the way God made him. That God knitted him together in his mommy's womb in a special way. If he gets this down deep in his soul from the beginning, then when or if kids try to comment or make fun of it, he will more likely respond by saying that it is just one of the ways that God made him special. It will also help him understand how God makes others special, so that if he sees someone with a physical difference he will see them in the same context!