Friday, June 20, 2008

Nice kids, nice kids, what cha gonna do? What cha gonna do when they come for you?

So often, we hear about the bad kids. At playgrounds, our eyes are drawn to the kids who yell, scream and kick. When someone wrongs your child, our mama sense go into over-drive. When we watch the news, we see the ones who made wrong choices, often they're so wrong that we cannot even imagine how that decision came to be.

Let's not let the bad kids eclipse the sweet ones. The nice ones may pass unnoticed, but they're out there and for that, I'm so thankful.

My friend came to visit recently. I hadn't seen her kids in years, but they were even more lovely than I remembered. They were sweet, funny, friendly, polite and self-assured.

There's a large family at shul that was formed through a series of adoptions. These children all came from vastly different circumstances and countries. And these kids are WONDERFUL. The 16-year-old boy, having grown up surrounded by other children, is amazing with younger kids. He worked for their Sunday school class and he's a counselor at camp. Both of my daughters insist they're going to marry him. His sister is about 22 and one of the sweetest people I know. When I took the kids to an event last week and the big kids weren't playing along, she came to get them and dance with them. She gladly scooped up TheBoy so that my arms were free. There are other brothers and sisters who are very nice, but those two come to mind immediately. When considering moving away, that family is one of the reasons I don't want to go. When we do move, I plan on writing a letter to them all to tell them that.

Another friend's daughter grabbed the phone to speak to Girl2 when she was having a difficult time. That friend tried to help calm Girl2 down. She was so sweet and caring. She's a few years older than my girls, but that has never bothered her. She's always willing to play with my girls and she never speaks down to them. I love that kid (and her mom who is equally amazing).

Then there are random kids that we never get to know well, but are lovely none-the-less. These are the kids who immediately come up to my kids and ask to play, the ones who hold the door open or are very polite.

I've said this once before, but I think we should all challenge ourselves to not only notice the good kids, but also to make them aware of our attention. When a child holds the door for you, make sure you let his/her parents know that he/she did it and that you appreciate it.


Irim said...


Wonderfully said. I've always thought that we sneer at and judge parents whose kids are misbehaving - one day, I decided to turn that on its head and thank the parents at the table near me for having such wonderfully behaved kids.

It was worth it for the look of gratification on their faces. Now I try to make a point of it.

It's hard enough raising children, but it's the most amazing thing you can do. It's time we acknowledged that and started making it a bit easier.


Phyllis Sommer said...

beautifully said. you're right -- only the bad kids get press. we definitely need to pay more attention to the good ones:-)

The Little Window Shoppe said...

Well said, what a good post.