Nowadays it seems as though nothing is free. How does the saying go? You don’t get something for nothing. It is sad that a lot of people who give – gifts, help, advice – often expect something in return. What happened to good old-fashioned kindness? I know it’s still out there, somewhere. I see glimpses of it every so often. I don’t mean this to be a sweeping statement as there are many genuinely kind people who don’t expect anything in return but unfortunately you can’t help but think that ‘giving’ has turned into a negotiable commodity.
Children are different though, especially when they are very young. Maybe it’s their innocence, their lack of cynicism or just their eagerness to please. Giving comes so naturally to them. Apart from the occasional disagreement and falling out over lego, they really are a welcoming bunch. It always amazes me how they see past race, language and culture. To them, it’s just another child, someone to play a game of chase with regardless of whether they speak the same language or not.
I see it often with my eldest. He’s in his first year at school and they have had a few new children join them throughout the year. All easily welcomed into the fold and buddies before the bell rings, you’d think they had been friends for years. His willingness to give his toys to friends after a playdate always makes me smile, “it’s ok, Mummy, he likes it and I said he could borrow it”. I can’t imagine loaning out my favourite pair of boots that easily. Some may say it’s the naivety of childhood, their immature understanding of consequences but I just think it’s sweet.
This generosity is most prevalent at home. I know I’m not the only parent who receives many offerings from their child on a daily basis. A kiss, a hug, a soggy piece of fish finger, a scrawled piece of ‘art’ to put on the fridge. These happen every day, without fail. Sometimes it happens so much I don’t give it the proper acknowledgement it deserves. I should, because each and every one of those offerings is special. Given out of pure desire to please me and make me smile. No hidden agenda. Just my little one wanting to make me happy.
We were in the garden at the weekend and one by one they came up to me and presented me with a flower they had picked. “This is for you, Mummy”. Each of their little faces looking up at me with such love and anticipation, hoping to make me happy and holding their flower as if it were gold.
I loved this moment. They are so innocent and loving, I wish it could stay this way forever. I want them to always see the good in people and give others a chance before judging them. I know they won’t always be like this, it would be naive of me to think that it’s possible. But I hope that, as adults, we can at least learn a thing or two from these little people. We spend all day trying to teach them about life and growing up, maybe we should listen to what they are teaching us.
Linking up with #MagicMoments over at The Oliver’s Madhouse