This post started out as a mini-rant about how appalling it was that a group of sixth graders couldn’t agree on any game to play together except for a certain gun game. When I reminded them (for the zillionth time since kindergarten) that “we don’t play gun games here,” one member of the group piped up hopefully, “Can we use knives, instead?”
Granted, the guns and knives are all invisible, pretend. But I was irked. Not only because they were arguing with me over a rule they had heard umpteen times, but mainly because a group of healthy boys with access to a crateful of basketballs and footballs, couldn’t come up with anything else to do. It was making me worried for the future.
Then the focus of this post took a big 180-degree turn. My youngest daughter was named “Rotary Student of the Month,” not for any major accomplishment or action, but simply because the guidance counselor noticed that she is quietly there, helping wherever help is needed. I realized that just like so many honors that usually go to the kids who make the biggest splash, I was about to give all the focus of my post to the one group that made the biggest dent in my week.
But what about the many, many kids like Amanda, who just do what kids should do, happily, kindly, and even lovingly?
So Michelle, this post is dedicated to you, for coming around the circulation desk to give me a warm hug every time you are in the library. I loved the way that you whispered to me that you still think about the librarian who retired last year, and when I suggested that you write to tell her, and that I’ll give her the letter, you got right to work and put all your love in that note.
Charlie and Richard, and the little guy whose name I can’t remember, I loved the way that you just stood near me on the playground and smiled, and when I asked if there was something I could do for you, one of you gave me a huge grin and said, “Play with us!” You even meant it, I think!
Danica. You have faced your best friend’s recent move with courage and grace. Even without her, you are still practicing your basketball. Thank you for throwing your ball to me. You keep encouraging me, but I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to make 4 out of 5 free throws again like I did a couple of weeks ago.
Davin, Dillon, and Deon, when you got half a block down the street after school on Friday and then came back, I thought you had left something at school. Instead, you each had a Valentine’s candy in your hand, just for me! Thank you for your “sweet” thoughtfulness!
Finally, Miss Remson’s kindergarten class, you deserve a special shout-out. You’ve had a guest teacher now for two weeks while your teacher is taking care of her very ill mother, and that can be tough for 5-year-olds to take. How sweet and loving of you to follow Nico’s lead and stand up the card and picture in your cubbies that Miss Remson sent to each of you so you don’t forget her. I don’t think Teacher Jill, who witnessed this act of respect and compassion, will ever forget you.
Thank you, elementary friends. I learn more about being kind and loving from you every day. Happy Valentine’s Day!
May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other
and for everyone else. . . . (1 Thessalonians 3:12)
Image credit goes to my friend, Jill Stanton. Thanks, Jill!
For friends new to this blog, “Wednesday’s Word” is a weekly Bible audio clip that rotates between Genesis, Luke and Psalms. Occasionally, I post “Wednesday’s Word to the Free,” a short Bible passage on what it means to be free. Freedom is a very big concern to Timley Mouse, the tiniest character in my upcoming novel, Bon Voyage, Sophie Topfeather!
On Sundays, I post an article-type post on themes in the novels: faith, friendship, diversity, etc.
Thanks for reading! Feel free to send to someone else who might enjoy posts like this one.