If you read my
novel article for Working Mom, you'd know that I don't exactly break into a song and dance with cartwheels when people ask me how each boy measures up to the other. Who's smarter. Who's quicker. Who's better. It.. well... bugs me. It really does. My personal favorite? Middle-aged lady bending over to be eye level with Mak and Tato (for extra impact I guess?): "Soooooo.. which one of you is the good one and which one is the bad one?" Oh, wait. I think that deserved a cartwheel. Maybe even a song and a dance.
Which is why I love Edward Hallowell's children's book: A Walk in the Rain with a Brain. Dr. Hallowell, teacher, psychiatrist and advocate for children with attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorder writes: I originally wrote this book for my three young children. I wanted to teach them a wonderfully liberating truth: no brain is the best. It is crucial that children do not start believing an insidious myth most people throughout history grew up believing: that only a few people are "smart". That belief has held far, far more people back than lack of brainpower ever did.
The story line is a bit odd but the message is unbelievably powerful. Lucy, a little girl, walks outside on a rainy day and spots Manfred, a brain. As they wander about looking for his head (I warned you didn't I?) she asks him to help her become smart. Fred said with a start, "Everyone's smart! You just need to find out at what!"
There's more! There's more!
No brain is the same, no brain is the best. Each brain finds its own special way.
You can slide, you can read, you can run - whatever you do make it fun!
We're all smart inside.
And no brain should hide!
What we each need to do,
As we grow, me and you,
Is try all that we possibly can.
This one's a keeper.