Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

I Don’t Want To Rule The World. I Just Want To Change It, That’s All.

Have you ever thought about what you would do if you ruled the world?

Have you ever thought about what you’d do if you ruled the world? I mean not in a political sense, but in a “if things were they way I wish they were” way?

Would you go back in time and undo mistakes? Would you freeze life for brief moments while considering what to do when you feel angry, hopeless, and afraid?

Would you own homes across the planet? Would you help the starving and neglected? Would you have liposuction, professional highlights, or hire somebody to watch the kids for two hours while you take a much-needed nap after being up at 2am, and up for good by 7am, never feeling rested or ready enough to start your day?

Would you start the best special needs school? Would you fix your leaky roof? Start a college savings? Help the needy?

I want to do all of those things, but I don’t want to rule the world.

I would like to change it.

I’d remind all of us that our interactions matter. That judging others is easy and quick and may alleviate some of the pain caused from living our lives, but that ultimately, we are only able to judge ourselves, and our own actions and reactions.

We have a choice.

We can act and live with grace and deep breaths, or we can act and live with angry hands, red faces, and accelerated hearts. We can choose to feel the power that spreading hate, fear, and tears brings. We can step on other people’s weaknesses, and we can stand taller while trampling over them on the pile of judgement and self-righteousness brings.


We can feel the power that comes from giving love even when it’s hard to. We can understand that when people lash out at us, they are lashing out at their own worldviews and how they interpret who we are, without ever knowing us. We can spread love and understanding. We can decide, even when standing in an annoying line at Target while watching somebody “do it wrong,” that maybe, we don’t know what the rest of her morning looked like. What the rest of her life looks like.

We can decide to not walk on the fallen, and instead, give them a helping hand, and realize that life’s decisions are hard and devastating and until we’ve lived what they have, that we have no idea of their beauty, their triumphs, or their losses.

I don’t want to take over the world.

I would like to change it. I’d like to change the fact that my son came home from school yesterday a little bit more tender and unsure because a classmate called him a weirdo. I’d like to change the fact that my son – and all of us – are a little bit devastated when somebody thinks we’re weird and calls us on it.

I’d like to find a way for children to be children and wonder why another little kid “can’t talk like a regular person” without it becoming something for the kid who can’t “talk like a regular person” to be ashamed of.

I’d like for all of us to regress a bit into our tribal selves, and realize that we’re a global village. That our actions have ripples that spread to the satellites and the webs and that choosing to not understand hurts a lot more than choosing to understand does.

Because judgement when people don’t know the story? It’s not okay.

Maybe I have made choices that you don’t understand.

You’ve likely made some that I don’t understand.

But really? Who are we? Have we been in one another’s homes when we’re ill, dealing with life’s birthdays and deaths, horrors, heartbreaks and quiet celebrations? Do we really know?

And, most importantly, shouldn’t we try to understand first? What if we had empathy before judgement, all of the time.

What if? It might just bring all of us a bit closer to the perfectly imperfect that we know exists, on a calm spring day.

I want all of us to take deep breaths and remember the best peace we’ve known.


This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. Each week, I host bloggers and writers who want to participate in a prompt and make new writer friends. This week’s sentence is “The first thing you must do to take over the world is…”

Me (each week) FindingNinee
Michelle of Crumpets and Bollocks (this week’s thinker upper to the sentence) and
Anna of Fitfunner

  • Don - Yo? You still blog?

    Who called Tman a weirdo? I hate dbag kids and their dbag parents. Even if he is a weirdo, good for him! I’m a weirdo too.

    Okay I have to work and this is sooooooo much typing on my phone! Great post. You have a good heart under your great boobs. I hope this world is half what you want it to be someday.January 29, 2015 – 10:10 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - You deserve a trophy for your phone typing from work tonight and yeah, weirdos are maybe good. Steve Jobs was a weirdo right? YAY for boobs. Well um whatever. Oh and yayyy for good hearts.January 30, 2015 – 12:04 amReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - I definitely think you will change the world and so much so for the better, because knowing you this long, I can say I truly know in my heart that you will do your very best to make this happen. Hugs to you and truly have so much love and faith in you for this 🙂January 30, 2015 – 3:09 amReplyCancel

  • Kelly McKenzie - I’m with you Kristi. I don’t want to take over the world. I’d like to change the world as well. The key point for me in your post had to be “choosing to not understand hurts a lot more than choosing to understand does.” Bravo. If one person reads this and decides to follow that path you’re on your way.January 30, 2015 – 3:10 amReplyCancel

  • Ruchira Khanna - I agree with your perception, Kristi Rieger Campbell. All I wanna join in with you and pray and pray hard that the world be a better place for our kids…Amen!January 30, 2015 – 3:11 amReplyCancel

  • Anna Fitfunner - I like where you went with this prompt. Wanting to change the world positively is a noble goal. But more noble than that is how you are actively working to make the world a better place. For example, your participation in #1000speak and your mentorship within the blogging community. Actions make a difference! (BTW, I know that I’m going to go against the tide here, but I think that it is a good thing that Tucker is becoming aware that other kids can be mean. It has absolutely nothing to do with his diagnosis, and everything to do with how he needs to learn to navigate this earth. I wish wish wish that it would be different for him, but it won’t be. And so, good for him that he starts to learn about it while he has strong loving parents to guide him and help him establish his self-confidence.)January 30, 2015 – 3:25 amReplyCancel

  • Vinay Kumar Tymerri - “The first thing you must do to take over the world is… take control over yourself first!”

    Hosts:January 30, 2015 – 3:31 amReplyCancel

  • Ripped Jeans & Bifocals - Such a beautiful sentiment. I know you’ve had quite the day and the “what you don’t know” part of your piece really resonated with me because of it. You may not rule the world…but you rule, dude! Seriously. XOXOX.January 30, 2015 – 4:33 amReplyCancel

  • Kathy Tyson - This is great!!! My answer has to be … Forgive.January 30, 2015 – 5:12 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Yes there are a lot of things I’d like to change, but I don’t want to be in charge. And I love your definition of judgement – “when people don’t know the whole story.” There’s a Stevie Wonder song that came to mind. I love it simply for the words he’s written. The part that came to mind was “Shame on them. Shame on us.”January 30, 2015 – 6:08 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I had to YouTube the Stevie Wonder song because it wasn’t one that came to mind immediately but I recognized it once I heard it and can completely tell why you thought of it because yeah, shame on them and shame on us…
      Judgement is ALWAYS when people don’t know the whole story right? I mean we look at our lives, our neighbors and the people we don’t know. We assume so much when we don’t know (and by we I don’t mean you or me or anybody really just the collective)… but it’s like looking at somebody at the grocery who has dirty pants. For all we know, her kid has been vomiting all night, she threw on the closest clothes to her to get the medicine and hasn’t slept in 50 hours OR she could just be gross. Right? 😉January 31, 2015 – 1:49 amReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Rogers - My heart breaks when people judge without empathy, or knowledge of the whole situation. It hurts when they’re mean to other people, and act in ways which divide rather than unite. It makes my soul squirm when they use their own hurts and their own lack of comprehension as a jumping-off point for cruelty.

    But you, your shinybright soul, your good heart, and Our Land, are some of the stiches which keep putting that sad little heart back together.

    You are already changing the world. I hope the rest of it catches up soon.January 30, 2015 – 6:44 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - Oh Kristi, love this. If I’d participated, I think I might have mimicked you once again. I don’t want to rule the world either, but change it? Yes please. I’m so sorry that you and tucker rough days. I want to live in the world you write so eloquently about – empathy and wonder. I wish we could make that happen.January 30, 2015 – 1:31 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Great minds, baby. Or well, similar enough that we can recognize one another’s greatness which is just as good.
      I want to live there too. Let’s at least try to make it happen. I mean, look what people have done with their words? Like “I have a dream” (not that we’re MLK or anything but really he changed the world with his words and actions right????)January 31, 2015 – 1:51 amReplyCancel

  • Katy Mack Clark - Yes! I’m sorry your son came home a bit more weary. As a mom, I find that the hardest part about sending the kids out in the world to be hurt. Much better to focus on love, compassion, kindness, and not judging.January 30, 2015 – 1:37 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Amen…my dude says kids at school tease him about the way he talks even though he has a beautiful deep voice and speaks clearly. This is apparently a recent thing and he claims more and more kids are imitating how he sounds. Is it typical teen boy teasing or judgmental asshole teasing? I’m not sure but either way it sucks…please start that school. Our world needs our land badly!January 30, 2015 – 3:03 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - CRAP really??? Oh Emily, that so bums me out. I’m sorry. UGH to it being recent too. I mean duh that’s dumb because whether it’s new or old it just SUCKS!!!! Crap!!! Ok I’ll start the school. Do you have like um, I dunno…. funding??? CRAP CRAP CRAP.
      He speaks clearly and they tease him??? Tucker does not speak clearly and well, will likely have this as a challenge forever. WTF do we DO???
      Start that school. That’s what we do. Dangit.January 31, 2015 – 1:55 amReplyCancel

      • Emily - I may have asked you this in the past, but do you watch “Parenthood.” The series just ended the other night and I was BAWLING at the end. The parents had started a school and the last episode shows the son graduating from there with a HUGE smile on his face (he hardly ever smiled before). The show wrapped up several story lines, but for me, that one was the most meaningful for obvious reasons. We are now looking into new schools for next year for real. Even though he’s transferred schools twice already, we’re not giving up and know that there has to be someplace out there with kind, non-judgmental people. But yes, start that school – please!!January 31, 2015 – 12:52 pmReplyCancel

        • Kristi Campbell - Emily,
          I haven’t watched Parenthood. Should I? I mean if I have to start at the beginning? I like the idea of the son graduating with a HUGE SMILE. So much. Especially if he hadn’t smiled much before.
          I’m really sad to hear that you’re in the market for a new school because that means that the current one isn’t a great fit which just sucks. 🙁
          I think every school needs to have more programming about how to be compassionate toward others and ourselves. Seriously this bullying stuff is too much. Too often. Not right. Another friend privately IMd me saying that they’re looking at private school for their child who had been treated terribly recently. Sigh.
          Dana just recommended Transparent which I also haven’t seen. xxooJanuary 31, 2015 – 7:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Roshni - I’m so very sorry, Kristi! Kids can be brutal sometimes. I hope Tucker has recovered from that incident.January 30, 2015 – 3:36 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, Roshni.
      I spoke to his special ed teacher/aide today and I think they are willing to work with me on something to help…fingers crossed and good thoughts appreciated!!January 31, 2015 – 1:59 amReplyCancel

  • Dana - We never know anyone else’s whole story – how can we? We aren’t in their brain or heart, and that’s where the truth is.

    I don’t want to be in charge either. But with lots of people who want to change the world, maybe we can.January 30, 2015 – 3:50 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I love this comment. Where the truth is. yes to where the truth is and why is it sometimes so hard to find? It’s right here. In our brains and our hearts. Thank you Dana. <3January 31, 2015 – 2:00 amReplyCancel

  • Mardra - Good news, new friend, You *are* changing the world.
    Keep it up.
    <3January 30, 2015 – 4:09 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Ah Madra. As are you. As have you been. I’m honored to be your new friend.January 31, 2015 – 2:01 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ Golden Spoons - THIS is the response you give to Scary Mommy trolls!!!!! Yes! I don’t want to rule the world either, but if everyone could have this perspective, maybe it wouldn’t be such a bad world to rule. XOXOJanuary 30, 2015 – 5:16 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Well, yes. But only here, and only quietly and only completely not obviously… for now, at least, I think that’s how it should be…
      here’s to a better, more compassionate, more open and understanding world. For all of us. For our kids. For us, as kids and for all of the humans who are humaning forever. xxoooJanuary 31, 2015 – 2:06 amReplyCancel

  • zoe - Caught ya at the scary mommy site… I got me a new name so you may not recognize me dunno…and no I wasn’t the troll! Hahaha maniacal laughter! Although I would suggest this post goes up next to that one! Xo meJanuary 30, 2015 – 5:49 pmReplyCancel

  • Scott Hansen - Becoming a part of the blogosphere helped me become a lot less judgmental. Reading all these incredible and diverse points of view made me realize that I don’t know as much as I think I know. Or as much as I thought I knew. I appreciate you and every other blogger for taking the time to share your stories and for giving me that perspective.January 30, 2015 – 6:04 pmReplyCancel

  • Nicki - Yes. Me too. Thank you for saying it! <3January 31, 2015 – 2:06 amReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - THIS. I’d like to change it too, Kristi Rieger Campbell. I would if I could, for you… <3 BUT YOU ARE CHANGING IT!! With every beautiful passionate word you place on our hearts... you are.January 31, 2015 – 3:45 amReplyCancel

  • Amy Hyde Goodwin - This is beautiful, Kristi. Thanks so much for the reminder to always try to take the high road and do our best to raise others up whenever possible. You really nailed it — it’s as much about the little things we do and say to others as it is about the big things.January 31, 2015 – 4:08 amReplyCancel

  • Shay from Trashy Blog - Oh, I love this. I have the same thoughts all the time, but every time I think of ways I can change the world, I get overwhelmed. Often, I’ll tell myself–do what you can. Even changing the direction of someone’s day by making it better in some small way is a step. I don’t want to aim small, but some days that’s what I can do–and I hope it’s enough. I am always trying.January 31, 2015 – 9:16 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - You know what? making somebody’s day better is HUGE. Just think – if we all tried to make a couple of people’s days better every day, and then they tried to make a couple other’s days better, it’d be like that tv commercial many moons ago with the “and so on and so on and so on!” See? It’s good!February 1, 2015 – 7:24 pmReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth - Lovely! Very insightful!January 31, 2015 – 10:09 amReplyCancel

  • Katia - I love the distinction you’re making between ruling the world and changing it. You may not see it, but I think that you’re already successful in the latter. I think that it’s what you’ve been aiming to do with Our Land and I think that you’re creating ripples and waves and changes in your readers through creating awareness.Keep doing what you’re doing so brilliantly. Write honestly and courageously and from your heart and I’ll keep watching in awe how you get dozens of comments on every single one of your posts, as you should, because they touch souls. I HEART you. 🙂January 31, 2015 – 8:19 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerri - It took having Bridget to mute my bitch factor when it came to judgement. BUT I still fall into that trap. I do not know why, but somehow it is easier to fall into that bitch than that human. It should not take having a child that is different be the catalyst for change. Yet for so many….February 2, 2015 – 1:34 pmReplyCancel

  • Out One Ear - Linda Atwell - Another beautiful, heartfelt piece. I especially liked: We can feel the power that comes from giving love even when it’s hard to. I feel this way more often than I’d like to admit and I don’t want it to be that way. I don’t want it to be hard to feel or give love.

    But of course I adored the rest of this piece too because I would like to see more empathy in the world. Try to be kind to one another rather than tearing someone down. I’m so sorry Tucker was called weird. But please tell him in Portland, (and Austin too), we’re all proud to be tagged as weird. It’s the motto: Keep Portland Weird. I think they must have borrowed it from Texas since I am pretty sure I heard a similar logo when I visited Austin several years ago.

    But of course, at this age, Tucker will not understand. He doesn’t know yet that it is ok to be different. In fact, out in the world, different often shines brighter than “sameness.” My heart goes out to you and your little guy as he figures out how cool it will be to be “weird” in a good sense. (I hope you know I mean this in the kindest, most loving way possible).February 3, 2015 – 10:37 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I love that Portland’s motto is “Keep Portland Weird!” (and Texas too??)
      And yeah, I definitely know the way in which you mean it Linda! We’re all different in some ways… it’s just hard as parents to wonder whether our kids will find friendship and a sense of self compassion for their quirks and differences. Sigh. Thanks, you!February 14, 2015 – 7:20 pmReplyCancel

  • Sarah - You rock! Love this. I love how you don’t want to rule the world that you just want to change it. One day at a time you are changing it!February 12, 2015 – 8:58 amReplyCancel

  • Christine Rosas - “choosing to not understand hurts a lot more than choosing to understand does” I love this! 🙂February 14, 2015 – 6:42 amReplyCancel

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