What I learned at preschool today

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My daughter is in preschool and one of her classmates is a little boy who is full of spunk and passion and uniqueness that often displays itself in ways that some kids (and adults) might find difficult to deal with. He’s an intense kid but so sweet and when he finds something (or someone) that he likes, he latches on with all he’s got.

A few months ago, Abby told me that this boy tried to hold her hand and she didn’t like it, so I told the preschool teacher. She told me she would make sure Abby didn’t feel uncomfortable around the boy, but the reason he likes her so much is because she is nice to him and helps him and plays with him, something not all the kids do because of the reasons I mentioned earlier. I was proud of Abby that day but I also wanted to make sure that she was not put in a position where she was uncomfortable, even though these kids are only 4 years old.

The time passed and while it seemed the boy still had an affection for Abby, she didn’t complain further.

Last week we arrived at preschool one day and the boy told her that he had named his new fish “Abby” after her. She seemed confused but I told her (and him) that that was a very sweet thing to do. Then today we arrived and the little boy had a gift for her, a book about her favorite topic – ladybugs. I swear I had a tear in my eye over this sweet gesture.

Two things struck me in this moment.

First, more pride over the way my daughter treats this sweet boy. She looks beyond the things that may bother others and treats him like she would want to be treated.

Second, and more profound, is the great gifts this little boy has to offer, and I don’t just mean books about ladybugs. On the surface he can be a bit daunting and challenging but beyond that, he has managed to make Abby feel special and help her see that simple gestures like being someone’s friend are valuable and important. He has such a sweet heart and when we judge people purely on a first impression or gut reaction (I’m way too guilty of this myself) we can miss out on getting to know someone who is extraordinary.

I will always remember this little boy. He has touched my heart with his love of dinosaurs, construction trucks, and of course, my daughter. Not to mention his Halloween costume – not many kids can pull off a Venus Flytrap….

The next time you come across someone where your instinct reacts based upon a first impression, I urge you to look past that and look for what makes that person special. I promise you that what you find will change your life for the better.

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  1. says

    What a heartwarming story. It’s incredible how much we can learn from watching young children interact. I commend you for encouraging your daughter to treat this boy with respect and kindness, even though he was different. If only adults could maintain the same level of respect for one another as they get older.

  2. Janet W. says

    Such a sweet story. You can’t judge a book by its cover. Your daughter sounds like a special little girl and that is refreshing to know that even when others didn’t care for this little boy, she looked beyond that.

    • says

      He’s a funny kid too. I really like him but he does run hot and cold sometimes and definitely falls under the more challenging category. He’s such a character and full of personality.

  3. says

    This post definitely touched my heart as well! Firstly because you raised such a kind and loving daughter to be so understanding and compassionate towards people and secondly, because of that little boy and his thoughtfulness.

    Those are the moments when you stop and think to yourself humanity has some humanity left after all :)

    • says

      Thank you!

      We spend so much time judging people for a specific thing – looks, actions, etc that it blinds us to what really matters. This boy reminded me to look beyond that.