I picked the boys up from school today. Today is Wednesday and that means Gavin has his blood work today. Normally I would drop Elliott off at home and then take Gavin but today was different. Lizze was not feeling well and Emmett was sick so they were sleeping. I had to take Elliott with us. We were talking about their day discussing what was going to happen at the doctors office. I reminded Gavin that if he’s brave then I’ll get him ice cream. I told Elliott that I would get him ice cream as well but he had to behave. They were both very excited at the thought of getting ice cream.
On the way we saw a man standing on the corner holding a sign. I couldn’t read the sign because we were passing by and facing the opposite direction. We got hung up at the stop light across the street from the gentleman was standing. My kids are very observant and so I was asked why he was standing there. I told them that I didn’t know. I said that partly because I didn’t know and partly because I didn’t know how to explain to them why he was probably there. The light turned green a few moments later and we drove by. After thinking about it for a minute I decided to ask my boys a question. I explained that we had $4 (honestly that was all I had) and we were going to use that to buy them ice cream after Gavin’s blood work. However, I thought I could use this moment to maybe teach my kids something they probably wouldn’t learn in school. I told the boys that we could do two different things when we were done at the doctors. I said that we could take that $4 and go get ice cream or we could take that $4 and give it to the man holding the sign. I asked them what they thought the right thing to do was?
I heard them talking amongst themselves for a minute. I asked them again what they thought they would like to do. I told them that it was up to them. I planned on respecting whatever they decided. Elliott told me that they think it would be better to give the man the $4. I’ll be real honest, that was REALLY proud moment for me as a father. Gavin did really well with the blood draw and we left and walked out to the van. I asked them if they remembered what we were going to do with the $4. They said yes and Elliott asked me if he could pick a dandelion for the man with the sign. I said of course you can. We got into the car and headed for where we last saw him standing. I pulled into the gas station and pulled around to where he was standing holding the sign. I rolled down the window and he walked over. I handed him the money and the dandelion and told him my son wanted to give him the “flower” as well. He said thanks and put the flower in his front coat pocket and said “this looks like a lucky flower”. He said thank you, turned around and walked back to his spot on the corner with his sign.
I looked back at Elliott and Gavin and they both had big smiles on their faces. I was so proud of them for doing the right thing. They honestly didn’t get their ice cream as that was all I had. In the end I have no idea what that man’s story was but all that mattered was my kids did a very selfless thing and I was proud of them. I thought I would share that with everyone because I’m just so proud of them. This goes back to what I have been saying about seizing the opportunity to teach our kids invaluable lessons. I don’t think they will be forgetting how that felt any time soon and neither will I .