Bless the Beasts and the Children

Things that make you shake your head....and maybe even cry.
My mother caught view of it in his little fist as he walked with my sister and I beside her. I saw a stearn face before I knew what had happened, and then I heard my mother say..."son, did you take that from Tommy Mac's store?" shyly he shook his head yes. He had a look on his face that conveyed to me that he had no idea that what he had done was wrong. After all everyone of those pieces of penny candy were right out in plain view and at knee height to an adult, perfect for the chubby hands of 3 year olds to sample and take home. Were they not there for the taking he wondered? "well, son" my mother continued "you must bring the candy back and tell Mr. Tommy that you are sorry and will never take anything from his store again" I was embarrassed for my brother and scared too. How would we ever be able to look at Tommy Mac again without hanging our head in shame. He was such a nice man. He even gave us a case of Popscicles when we had out tonsils out because he liked us.
So, down we all marched back to Tommy Mac's store to give him back his penny candy.
I don't remember what happened when we went back but the point I have remembered for a lifetime is never take anything that does not belong to you and more than that be respectful to adults.

Oh how the world has changed. The New Year is upon us and I have been pleasantly surprised how beautiful the new beginning has been. I have had many blessings already and have stopped to ponder each one as I recongnize them. They have caught me with unusual surprise, because ordinarily I do not see this many in such a short period of time. In sharp contrast to those blessings, an incident occured this afternoon that crushed all of that beauty. It has me shaking my head in sadness.

I was in a drive through line with three cars ahead of me. As I aimlessly glanced around the parking lot, the occupants in the car directly ahead of me caught my eye. I noticed a young father in the driver's seat and a boy of about 5 years old in the back seat. It struck me odd, because the little boy was not in a seat belt, and had opened his window. As the car inched up in line the little boy reached out, trying to hit the trash barrel or anything else his little hands could reach. I worried that he should be buckled in, but quickly dismissed the thought as none of my business. We moved up again and the little one who was trying to get his dad's attention did so to no avail. I noticed him tapping his father on the head and yet still no response. I thought about when I was a young mother and so overwhelmed with chores and duties that somethimes I ignored my children too, when I was deep in thought, I felt the dad must be feeling those same fears. Then the little one turned around in his seat to look at who might be in the car behind him. I smiled and he responded assuredly and confidenty by giving me a gesture.

I left that establishment and drove home in tears. How could a baby not much older than what my brother was all those years ago, be so different. Then I reflected, he really is no different. He is just a baby wanting to learn. Like my brother all those years ago he didn't know it was wrong to greet me that way. The difference isn't in the child, the difference is in the teaching. There was no adult guiding that little boy with the simlpe words...."son that is wrong." I shake my head and start to HUM <------ listen
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Patti J said...

Amen.... Great post! I remember taking a 'silly putty' one time. Of course, dear mother marched me back to the store, made me give back the putty, and promise to never 'steal' again. I was so young that I didn't realize it was stealing. I thought I was 'shopping' just like mom! Nowadays, parents can't even really discipline their children. If they raise their voice, or heaven forbid a swat on the fanny, 'authorities' are called't get me started! Great post!

Andrea L - EnchantINK said...

Oh ... it is such a burden to realise that there are so many kids who are just not being taught! SO MANY! So many parents who don't recognise the huge responsibility that God has given to them to parent these children so that they become valuable members of society! Instead they are indulged and ignored! My motto with my kids ... "Never let an opportunity pass to teach". Whether it is a discipline issue ... a comment on someone else's behaviour ... or simply a quiet reflection ... there is always something you can teach them! And ... it is all about realising that they cannot live as islands where their behaviour doesn't impact on others! Our responses ALWAYS impact in some way! So ... I teach my kids to stop and think about the other person! I guess it would be nice to think we were all doing that! Hugs xxaxx

Hoping the Blind Will See said...

I assume you're referring to Dan?! If not, I plead the 5th... I don't remember any incident like that, sooo... yep, must be Dan! :)

Butternutsage said... dear brother always ready to pass the blame! I am hoping the blind will see too!(wink) and Andrea you are so right about all of what you said. Even now my children are 31 and 33 and I find myself doing an even better job( I am less tired and wiser and more patient) of teaching them valuable adult/child lessons. Thank you for your thoughtful comment

Shelia said...

Bless the Beast and the Children . . . and bless the parents that are trying to teach their children right.

Kasey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kasey said...

Way too often we see teenagers and children not using manners, not because they are rude, although that is the case sometimes, but because their parents have chosen not to teach them. You see teaching children takes time, patience and a loving heart. It also takes a selflessness. Today parents are too busy working, running the rat race to earn money to get that latest flat screen tv or to upgrade their cars or furniture get that bigger house. I ask you....what is more important. Having it all and keeping up with the Joneses OR should it be far more of a priority to spend time equipping your children to survive the world, teaching them to contribute to society rather than only taking from it. Yes Donna I shake my head at today's attitudes too.