Its been a very peaceful day at home and I really could have walked into my new painting room and sat down and painted rocks for hours on end today when Delilah napped. So maybe she didn’t nap for hours on end but she was out for about an hour and forty five minutes. I had no motivation to paint any rocks. NONE! Like seriously me? The person who already posted about keeping the fun in sharing kindness rocks?
What changed? My five year old daughter, Abigail had observed in the hording behaviors of people and made comments about it the last time we were rock painting and hiding at the park. This was shortly after experiencing yet another example of greed and selfish actions being performed by adults to teach children the very great lesson of its not nice to share. Yes, really. I think that is the new lesson being taught: don’t share – take it ALL!
For example, when we went to a local community egg hunt sponsored by the church we attended in partnership with a number of other amazing businesses and people… I couldn’t help but notice the complete craziness in selfish greed being taught to children from a very young age. At the event, it was broke down to a couple of different kids age groups. There was one for basically babies and little crawlers/toddlers. Do you think it was the kids participating in this event? NO! NOT at all. So many parents were literally running around and grabbing eggs and shoving them into bags. They were jerking the eggs out of hands of kids not their own while not even paying attention to their own. Sure, I picked up one egg to hand it to my daughter and show her what is to do but it was once. And after the clear chaos began, It wasn’t worth it having her being a stepping stone for others to chase after eggs instead of parents letting their kids do it. I took her out of there!
What in the world? we are talking about plastic eggs that can be purchased for a dozen for a 1 dollar and filled easily with another dollar worth of candy. So 2 dollars a person will give up any kind of sense of decency, respect, compassion for kids for candy in a plastic egg? Then again, my sister said one family had managed to get 3 shopping bags filled with eggs and they were filling a bucket and handing it over to their significant other to get another empty bag for them to continue to fill!
Sure, at the end of the day, their actions and whatever it is they chose to do reflects upon them and its really not any of my business.
Though really thinking about it, what message does this send to children? What are we as parents and the community doing to teach our children about what is right or wrong?
What values do we teach them? Are we teaching them anything at all?
One of the things I’ve been having a major blast doing with my children has been painting kindness rocks and sharing them around town. The concept is simple to make little motivational stones and share them, hoping to brighten peoples days and spread kindness.
Its very fun to just grab a bag of rocks, bag of paint, some snacks, and go down to the park and paint with whoever and anyone. Its generally been very fun and you can meet a lot of nice people who are out there painting and hiding rocks. Except this last time.
So we had brought quite a few we had painted at home and had even more that was painted at the park. My two older kids went about trying to hide them and place them around the park. We usually do this just before leaving but this time, we stayed a little longer. The girls were playing with a new friend.
Abigail noticed that it was the same two people, parent and child, that was running around and grabbing all the rocks. They never once said hi to her or anything (not the point) but when they saw it was her who was running back to the table to get more rocks to hide (shes five and can only hold so much at one time) they started following her so they can just pick up all the rocks.
She noticed and didn’t want to hide the last few rocks. She asked to bring them home. She didn’t understand why they were taking all of the rocks? Didn’t they learn how to share and be nice to people? My five year old asked me those questions and more! She also asked me if she could go tell them they need to share and be kind to people.
I was dumbfounded at the time. What do I say to her? I told her the important matter is that we do a nice thing and we place the rocks and we hope for the best that they go to whoever needs them most, That we shouldn’t be concerned with what happens after we place them.
That answer, didn’t sit well with her. Why should it though? What lesson am I teaching her that she just needs to accept their are greedy parents raising greedy kids and we should just be okay with them hording stuff instead of sharing?
- She doesn’t want to paint rocks at the park anymore.
- She doesn’t want to hide rocks anymore.
- She doesn’t think doing good things for random people means anything.
So how can I sit at home, painting rocks when the enjoyment in doing so has been sucked out of my baby girl?
So its got me thinking a lot.
What to do? Seriously?
This rant will have some positive in it. I do plan to go to the park and host another rock painting party for whoever to show up. I do hope to teach all my kids that we shouldn’t give up because there might be a few bad apples out there. That trying to do good is all that maters. Even if say most rocks do go to people hording them for their private gardens at home or they sit in boxes in kids rooms because its the new thing to collect and horde, that its more important that a few rocks do make it into the hands of people who really needed an uplifting gestures. That its those people who need a word of encouragement that maters and why we should continue to paint and hide rocks – to give them out as random gifts that people who need a moment of kindness can have a random rock made of kindness to keep for them-self.
The only difference is, we will do it #onerockatatime! like literally, we will only hide one rock at a time! I hope this will make her feel better! 🙂