Sunday, April 25, 2010
This morning I was given an unexpected opportunity to teach my daughter a lesson in compassion and the act of kindness. We all headed down to the skate park to watch Robin do a few rounds in the bowl, and to let the kids run the length of the soccer fields to their hearts delight. It was unusually windy and cold, so I was glad that I had bundled them up despite the sunny skies. There were a handful of other teenagers at the park, to which I wasn't surprised despite the early hour. But what did surprise me was a lone little girl playing in the volleyball pits. She immediately attached herself to us, introducing herself as Hannah. I couldn't help but ask where her parents were, since she couldn't have been any older than six. But what caused me the most concern was that she was both barefooted and only in a t-shirt. Hannah didn't offer up much in terms of why she was there alone, but she did say that she lived nearby and that she was cold. I remembered that one of Isla's jackets was still in the back of the car and decided it was time to pass it on, just as it had been passed on to us once. Isla and I talked later about why I had given the little girl the jacket and the importance of showing kindness to others in need. I'm reminded of how blessed we really are, with family and friends and an incredible network of people surrounding us with support and generosity. I only hope that I can instill that important lesson in my children.