On January 7th, I wrote a blog asking parents not to deprive their children of experiencing gratitude. Today I saw a beautiful example of gratitude in action.
I was substituting for one music teacher of a two-person team. The teacher present, Mr. C, took a call on his cell phone from his two-year-old son and shared it with his class. The son was worried because his dad did not take a toy dinosaur that he had given him – something he takes with himself daily when he leaves the house. Mr. C thanked his son for his concern and said that he was all right. The son smiled.
Mr. C asked his son who made breakfast in the morning. The child said proudly that he “made the eggies.” (Mr. C had told me before classes that he made his son feel like he actually made the breakfast this morning). Mr. C thanked his son in front of his whole class. His son said, “Mommy, too.” Mr. C then thanked his wife for making the breakfast. Just to make sure he was still thanked, Mr. C’s son asked, “Me, too?”
The brief conversation so touched me. It was apparent that both Mr. and Mrs. C taught their child how to empathize, share gratitude and to feel honored. Mr. C’s son is only two! This child will already know how to show compassion, be gracious and feel important by the time he starts kindergarten. He may be among those to be envied by his classmates, but he will never know it because he has been rewarded for being compassionate and gracious. He will have what it takes to make his peers feel like gold.