January 27, 2014

Dear Bennett, Month whatever

Dear Ben,

When I picked you up from preschool last week, your teacher came out and said, "Bennett has the kind of personality that allows him to be friends with everyone.  That will serve him very well in life."

I didn't get a chance to ask her more about what happened, because, well . . . your sister was in her car seat screaming (you know how that goes).  But I wonder if it had something to do with the new kid in your classroom. I wonder if you were your usual friendly self, and included him like you'd known him all his life.

I knew this about you before she told me, of course.  You are a friendly kid.  You don't really care if someone is different than you . . . you'll always find a way to have fun with them, with few exceptions.  If you judge people based on anything, it's usually on how they treat other people.  You're sensitive to the kid who gets picked on, and you're helpful toward the kid who needs help.  And while we've tried to instill that in you, it really does just come naturally for you.

On several occasions, I've seen you in situations with kids who are being excluded.  You don't feel sorry for them, or include them to be nice.  You invite them to play, simply because you think it would be more fun with them than it would be without them.

Something that I've told you and your brother is that you have to put up the "antennae" for the people who need you. When you feel lonely, use it as a reminder to look for the lonely people around you and befriend them.  When you feel left out, look for the kid who also feels left out and go play with him.  You don't struggle with this one bit.

I hope that as you get older, your kindness toward others will continue.  Eventually, you'll start to see the differences between people, but I hope that it doesn't ever change how you treat them.  I'm so proud of you.


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