Have you seen this tooth-achingly sweet note a 10-year-old boy penned to his hard working mom and attached to an even sweeter homemade gift?
The photo has gone crazy viral since the boy’s sibling innocently posted it on Reddit.
The youngster’s touching note reads:
“Dear Mom, This is for you, I understand how hard you work, and I know you love strawberry milk, so I made this for you. ”
Sniff. Sniff. Right?
I mean, c’mon moms, admit it; that tear in your eye, the tingle in your gut, your melted heart-—pure jealously.
Okay, maybe, not 100% pure, but pretty darn close.
I know, because I felt the same way… so did all of my mom friends.
Our initial reaction upon viewing the photo was: “Awwww! Such a sweet, sweet, delightfully considerate kid.”
This, of course, was followed by: “Where can I get one of those?”
The kid, not the note.
Actually, the note too.
Though, having that kind of kid likely begets that type of note, so sign us up for both.
Not so much.
Comparing kids is one of the fundamental traps of parenting.
Think about it. How many times have you seen someone else’s kid do something amazingly fantastic and wondered why yours didn’t/couldn’t/wouldn’t do the same?
The children sitting like mute angels in front of you at church; the neighbor kid who picks up his toys without having to be threatened by his parents; the girl on TV who set-up a lemonade stand at the end of her driveway in order to raise money for displaced animals instead of a new bike; the boy who begged his mother to donate his kidney to a sick friend.
On the surface, we sardonically remark about trading in our kids for the near-perfect versions that don’t belong to us, but deep down we wonder if we are the reasons our kids aren’t as good as someone else’s. What are we doing wrong that our kids are not leaving us love notes in the fridge attached to frosty glasses of strawberry milk?
Comparing kids can be a dangerous habit. So dangerous, in fact, that often you run the risk of getting burned in the process.
Case in point: Last week, my inner green-eyed monster emerged when my pal shared that her son (my daughter’s classmate) won a foreign language award. The kid is fluent in Latin and French, and he’s only in second grade. Meanwhile, the extent of my kid’s French barely extends beyond “Gateau, s’il vous plait.” (Translation: Cake, please.)
Just as I was beating myself up for not enrolling my daughter in summer Latin lessons she came up to me holding a bird crafted out of Play-Doh. Her tiny handmade creation included nearly every detail found on a real Blue Jay, down to the white breast, the black stripes on the wings and ring on its lower throat.
I complimented her handiwork, but noticed a large gap between the bird’s beak and his throat. I wondered out loud if her bird’s mouth had fallen off during her walk from the dining room table to my desk in the living room.
“Mommy,” she exclaimed while pointing to her Blue Jay’s beak “birds don’t have mouths like people, their beaks are their mouths. This whole pointy thing is called a bill.”
Forget about comparing her to other children, my kid is a genius.
Clearly, I am the one who should be enrolled in summer school, not her.