It's all about me

Young children are bluntly honest because they haven't learned the filters that keep most of us from sayine exactly what we feel.  It's amazing when you calculate the amount of time we spend as adults managing what we say to protect ourselves and others. Young children don't bother - they just ask "what about me."

Recently, I had to take a business trip for a couple of days. Rather than just disappear, I told my children that I would be out of town.  My sons nodded and went about their evening.  My daughter was quite concerned:

I don't want you to go.

I have to go.

But who's going to take care of me?

Daddy. Plus our au pair (and our new au pair who was learning the ropes). And your brothers.

Oh.  Okay.

Off she ran to go play and continue with her evening, nonplussed by my departure.

In almost every interaction, consciously or not, I think people strive to know how it will impact "me". And that's not bad - some of the impacts can be to make me feel like I've made an impact on the world or improved someone else's life. I think that teaching my children that it's okay to feel good about doing good will encourage them to give back.

This weekend, we celebrated Purim and the good deed is to have a celebration and to ensure that everyone can have a celebration by giving gifts of food.  My daughter understood that she got pleasure making noise with her grogger (noisemaker).  My sons learned that there is deep satisfaction from donating food to a Food Bank and ensuring hungry families can eat. I really enjoyed everything about this holiday while teaching my children that to celebrate helping others.