Updated: Dec 7, 2021
November 14, 2021
Sunset 6:42 pm
The last home game was challenging for me working at the security gate entrance. I spent my time directing people where to go, checking bags and watching people walking in the area. The FSU sport store was packed with people buying gear and showing school spirit. Most of the people buying from the store was families and alumni from the university. Women dressed up for the night out at Doak Campbell stadium and men watching their kids play with light FSU jackets and footballs. Vendors giving away free goods and everyone enjoying their evening hoping that their favorite team wins. I was happy to meet a registered nurse from Miami, She was an experienced light skinned African American woman with beautiful light brown eyes that spoke of her career with pride. She told me that she delivered a baby from a 13 year old mother and worried that she would be okay once released from the hospital. The young woman was talking to child protection services about her unexpected delivery at the Miami memorial hospital. I'll never know what happened to this young woman and her newborn baby in Miami, Florida.
The story reminded me of when I started working at the Florida Supreme Court Dispute Resolution Center and the senior attorney at the time told me that young people runaway from bad situations sometimes. That young people often don't have the same opportunities to education, experience, and life lessons as others and its our job to help them understand the right path. Sometimes people say negative things about someone and we can be split on a decision but we have to keep moving forward. My heart goes out to that young woman and her story. My family has been fortunate to have healthy babies from my distanced relatives. The big idea in hard situations is to give them lots of kindness, lots of time, and keep a gentle eye on them after this vulnerable time. We often think of how people will see us in our community. But like I always say our world has secrets and stories untold. It's best not to judge someone on their next step in life's journey.
The kind registered nurse also told me of older women delivering children too. These women were around the age of 45 and 50 years old still fertile. Women can have children as long as they are still fertile, healthy and sexually active. This made me think of family and dependency mediation disputes across the state of Florida. Child care and elder care are important. Women and men can spend over half their life trying to have a baby. Nine months in a pregnancy and after delivering every waking moment watching, listening and believing in their kids. Giving yourself for the growth of this little human gets tough. In mediation, we spend a lot of time listening and making solutions for entire families to grow together. Sometimes people feel like they come from a broken family and their other relatives and friends don't understand them. I think it's that we don't talk about our problems in the open because we feel like we have to be perfect to have respect. Communicating your fears, desires, and frustrations comes with being able to see the brighter side of your dispute.