Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Character is What You Do When No One is Watching!

These words have always resonated with me and I have tried to instill them in my children. Always wondering if they get it, well my question was answered by my 9 year old daughter.
She came home upset from school yesterday. She had the second highest grade on the class spelling test. Now she has had top scores and less than top scores but usually has no issues as she believes she studied and did her best. So I asked her to tell me more about it, a possible teachable moment, I wondered? She said that the person who got the highest grade cheated. I told her those were strong words but she said she was angry! Not by the persons score as much as by said person telling others that she cheated and reveling in it to others, who like my daughter, had studied. Yes indeed, a teachable moment! One of the reasons I love being a stay at home mom, lot's of teachable moments before and after school!

I knew the whole (mom) speech of as long as you do your best just wasn't going to cut it this time. So I said that there is a lot of pride to be taken by doing the right thing. So I asked her,"What if you found a bag of money and no one saw you pick it up? What would you do?" She quickly said of course she would take it to the police. Why, if no one saw that you had it or would know you had it? She said because it belongs to someone else, it is not my money to spend. I told her she could buy toys and candy, even things for friends and family. So what did she say (I was so proud) in response?
She said, " She would know in her heart that it would be wrong and anything she bought with the money would not make her heart feel good. She wouldn't be able to enjoy the toys and candy, if she had not earned it or bought it with her own money. So then she turned to me, soft brown eyes looking up, and asked me what I would do? Then she stopped and said, "Mom, I know what you would do, you would give the money to the police too because what you do when no one is watching, is who you really are, in your heart, right?

I had tears in my eyes, motherly mission accomplished. "Yes, sweet child of mine, what you do in any given situation when you can't be caught or seen is called character ( and it counts)! You have to take satisfaction in the fact that sometimes, the only people who will ever know your greatness or good deeds, is you and God!"


ArtsyMama said...

I received your comment regarding the garland swap. I do not have a record of your email signing up for the swap and it has been closed for several weeks. The mail out date is soon. I will host another swap this summer.

rebeccaharper said...

Hey Valerie... what a moment worth documenting.. thanks for sharing.