Yesterday, Evie gave a homeless veteran on the corner her fruit snacks she didn't eat from her lunch on her first day of Kindergarten. The man didn't want to take them, but she insisted she wanted him to have them and she wasn't going to eat them. He was in tears over fruit snacks.
It was a small gift of kindness from my daughter-- she is 5, and she is learning that acts of kindness aren't always meant to be returned by that person, or ever, and she should always be loving and kind when she has an opportunity. Even when people don't deserve it... and even when she meets new friends in her new class, her new school, and they may not always be nice to her. It is her job to be the kind person when someone else isn't. I want her to learn this and act on this as often as she can... and I was so proud of her for giving something she likes to someone who "needed" it more.
Today, I went to eat lunch and I held the door open for an elderly woman. That's it. I held the door open. My Mom raised me with these manners, no matter who is behind you... Hold the door open, be polite. I ate my lunch, went to pay, and was told that woman paid for my lunch. I went over to thank her and she said that the single act of holding the door open for her, as a disabled elderly woman, was the kindest thing anyone has done for her in a long time.
She told me to visit her around Christmas to see her nativity scene on her street. She gave me her cross street, grabbed my hand and she started crying. I could tell she has had a rough day, week... whatever. It broke my heart really. Made me think a lot about how important it is to actively teach my daughter about kindness and humility.
I hope the greatest gift I can give my daughter is the lesson of kindness, love, and humility.