I felt a huge welling of pride for my son, and a whole lot of thankfulness toward my acquaintance. And I resolved to notice good things that kids were doing in my community - and tell their parents.
As parents it can be too easy to see the negative stuff with our kids. When we're working on various issues with each of our children - when we are in the thick of the challenging stuff as parents
- it can be hard to see the bigger picture. It can be hard to see that things are clicking, that things are going right.
I'd been working on courtesy and more selfless thinking with my son at home. I felt like my efforts were slow and my son seemed particularly resistant to what I consider certain appropriate actions at home. Hearing that my efforts were perhaps not in vain was a huge relief. It felt good to be able to mention to my son at the table that night that I'd heard a good thing about his actions. We both had smiles on our faces, and the rest of the evening (and the evening's behaviors) seemed to step up a notch. While I was careful not to overpraise, too, that positive reinforcement was something both of us needed.
I'm sure there are kids and moms all around you that could use a little positive reinforcement. Parenting is so thankless, and sometimes it's so hard to know if we're doing anything right.
Anything! When our kids are demonstrating that they are learning the lessons we are teaching, it's tremendous reassurance. I love hearing that my kids are doing good things, that they are doing
right things, and other moms love to hear it, too.
How you let a mom know their child did good is up to you. You could send an email, make a phone call, or even jot a note and put it in the snail mail. You can stop her in the hall during the open house and quickly say, "Your daughter was so nice to show me the way to the science lab." Five seconds is all it takes.
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