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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Learning Generosity All Over Again

Tuesday, February 23, 2010 By

Augusta, Ga. - Emerson attended a school-wide sock hop at her elementary school recently. Emmie and her friends were having a blast when I arrived.

At 4 and 5 years old, these kids are still at the point when all they desire is love and attention. So those who recognized me ran up for hugs and exclamations over their hair, their clothes, their accessories, their general fabulousness, while Emmie jumped up and down beside me, shouting, "Das MY mommy! She's goeend dance wif us!" Uh, no, she's not.

And then a little girl walked up with something in her hand.

"Miss Emerson's Mama?" she asked. "I couldn't come to Emerson's birfday party."

"Oh, that's okay," I assured her. "You can come next time."

"Wull, I bring her a present," she said, and handed Emmie a cellophane bag. Inside was a giant pickle that she had purchased from the concession stand with her last two snack tickets.

"Ohh, DANK you!" Emmie exclaimed, and gave her friend a hug. She looked at me uncertainly. She really doesn't like pickles. But she gave it a cautious nibble before trying to hand it back with a frown. Oh, I don't think so.

I leaned down and murmured in her ear: "Your friend gave you that pickle as a gift. You will not hurt her feelings. You will take four bites with a smile on your face, and then you may give to me to hold for you."

And she did! She took those bites, put the pickle back in the bag, handed it to me to hold, took her friend by the hand, and lead her back to the dance floor.

And three days later, when I pulled the bag out of the fridge and tried to toss the pickle in the trash, Emmie took my hand and put me in my place.

"My fren' gib dat to me as a present. You don't frow presents away, mama."

So we put it back. And it stayed there until two days ago. Then Scott ate it.

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile


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