This week I did something a bit out of my comfort zone. The kids and I went and bought groceries for someone very in need of food and very in need of compassion.
I have been thinking a lot about the kind of people I want our sons to be. I want them to grow up to be good citizens, responsible, honest, considerate and kind hearted people, who look beyond themselves and try and do some good in the world around them.
It's hard for Reid to understand what it would feel like to not have food to eat. It was a good opportunity for us to have a discussion about how much we take for granted. Things like electricity and food. Clothes that keep us warm and shoes on our feet.
Reid helped me pick foods and put them in the cart. It was super cute to hear him say things like "I think he might like this mom."
The gentleman that we were helping lives near our equipment rental shop and we delivered the groceries there and he came and got them. He was blown away. He told Mark he hadn't had this much food in his house in 5 years. To put that in perspective, it was just $35 in groceries.
Reid drew him a smiley face with the word "Enjoy" and put it in one of the bags. This man's face lit up at Reid's little drawing. He said he was going to put it on his fridge.
This sweet man has no family left and only a few friends and neighbors who watch out for him. It meant the world to me to be able to do something kind for him. He later called Mark and said that without people like us, he doesn't know how he would survive. Gulp. It just kind of puts that $5 latte I "need" into perspective, doesn't it?
It's a funny thing, helping others. Because when you help someone else, you find that it helps you just as much. When you try and make someone else happy, you find that it makes you happy as well.
And, when you set out to teach your child to be focused on something besides themselves, you realize that you needed the lesson too. Maybe even more than they did.