2.12.2011

A Sign We're Not Raising An Ass

Sometimes it's hard to tell if you're raising a good person. If you're like me it's one of those things that you're always hoping for, secretly pleading "I better not be raising an ass." Luckily there are these special little moments in parenthood that let you know you're doing ok. Today I realized we're on the right track.

I was reading a book to W when my friend texted, letting me know her car had broken down and she wasn't going to make it to the appointment she had in our area, nor would she be able to stop by as we had planned. Much to W's frustration, I spent a couple of minutes distractedly texting back and forth, asking if she needed anything, sending her good vibes. He finally swatted at my phone and demanded I read to him instead of texting.

"Our friend's car broke down and she is stuck on the side of the road, buddy. I need a minute," I told him.

"Should we help her?" he asked.

Wait, what?!?! I was dumbstruck. Helping others is a concept he understands? And he understands when people might need it. To me, helping others is such a core part of life, such an overwhelming part of our conscious. And he gets it? I think I could have cried.

Instead, I hugged him and told him he was quite a boy, but that she would be ok without our help. Ever since I've been wondering how he grasped the concept of helping others. Indeed helping others is something important to me and I'd love to have a child who shares those values and concern. So, have we done it? Only time will tell, I guess.

At least it made me realize we might be on the right track. And it's not just us. W spends an incredible amount of time with his Nana and Papa, who cover his weekday child care, as well as his aunts and uncles who are ready to step in whenever we need a sitter or Nana needs a hand. We're lucky and so is W, because together we all seem to be influencing him in the right way and putting a good foundation in place for him. I know he wouldn't be the boy he is it without all of their influence.

I imagine I'll have many more moments like this when it comes to this parenting thing. (At least I hope so.) Kids say things that are so simple, yet in the moment seem incredibly profound. Today's little gem will stay with me for a while.

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