If there is one thing that people love to talk about, it is kids. From a proud mom at playgroup to a grandfather on the pier, we’re all pretty proud of the kids in our lives. We love to share a cute little story about how our three year old reacted to a surprise or how our teenagers scored in their first varsity soccer game. We’re all quick to share when our children make honor role or have a part in the school play because we’re proud.
We’re proud of our children but we see daily posts about how our young people are entitled, spoiled and lazy. In fact, last year I kept a tally and on Facebook alone I saw over 16 different articles about how poorly our children are coming up and how they never go outside anymore and so on and so forth.
And while parents are signing up for positive parenting classes left and right, we’re not focusing on putting positivity back into childhood. It might be an unpopular opinion but I happen to think that the kids are doing just fine.
A little bit about my children; we have a 15 year old son, a 7 year old daughter and a 3 year old daughter. Our newest addition, Marigold is just 6 weeks old and I’m sure it comes as no surprise that with our three older children, baby Marigold spends a good amount of time in the car while we pick up her siblings from school, sports and lessons.
Just this week, I was driving all over the beach from Duck to Kill Devil Hills. I had a few stops along the way and I was collecting my children from their various activities after school.
I drove through Kill Devil Hills and saw a teen boy outside of Parks and Rec. This teenager, I didn’t recognize him, was helping a mom with a flat tire. He was on a bike and I overheard his question to the mom who was clearly in distress. “Can I help you, ma’am?” This was followed by laying his bike down on its side and quickly locating her spare tire.
I smiled and kept that sweet kid in my heart as I drove to Duck. When we arrived at our destination, I got my toddler and our infant carrier out of the car and made my way through the parking lot and towards the front door. A young girl, maybe 9 or 10 years old saw me walking. Her first response was to try to peek into the infant carrier to see a baby. Her next move was to double her pace to get to the door so that she could open it for me. My postpartum hormones were in over drive and I had to stop myself from hugging this sweet little girl.
Luckily, I was able to keep my emotions in check which reminded me that in December I actually wasn’t able to keep them under control due to the kindness of a sweet little boy at the annual Candy Bomber presentation in Manteo. It was the first time that our 7 year old and 3 year old had attended and they had high expectations to receive a candy bar. Despite their best efforts, they didn’t catch one of the very few candy bars that fell from the sky. A little boy, maybe 4 years old, approached my girls with his candy bar in hand. He gave them the candy bar that he had caught because he had also caught one the year before and knowing that it was rare, he wanted to share with two little girls that he had never met before. This sweet little boy had tears rolling down my cheeks because of his kindness and I don’t think I’ll ever forget that gesture. I know that my daughters will never forget it either.
Not just here, but in every town, kids can catch a lot of flack for the way they are growing up. Kids can have moments of entitlement no matter how they are raised. But, I see so much good in our local Outer Banks kids. So kudos to you, Outer Banks parents. The kids here are pretty amazing! Childhood positivity, pass it on.