I was faced with a curious situation this week involving a neighbor who gave a hand-me-down to my kid and 2 months later decided to take it back.
To give you some background information, this is an elderly woman - whom I have befriended and helped out on numerous occasions - who found herself with an excess of old Pokemon Cards that nobody wanted.
One night about 6 weeks ago she asked if Axel might enjoy them - and he accepted them with gratitude and excitement. That night Jahred and I were asked to stay up late and study the game so we could play when he woke up. Study we did and even took pictures to prove it.
Axel played and played with the cards. Sorting them and attempting to understand their respective values and roles. He brought them along in the car and taped the poster in his bedroom closet. They made him feel grownup and "cool."
Two days ago I heard someone screaming my name and headed to the Pokemon neighbor to see what she wanted. She said that she was "hoping that Axel won't be too disappointed" but has decided to give those cards to her grandson...who didn't want them 6 weeks ago but does now.
I tried not to use my "bossy voice" - as Axel refers to it - but I told her I would handle it and went home to explain the situation to Axel. He was sad but grabbed the entire box and brought them across the street. I could have brought them myself but wanted her to see his face as he relinquished a GIFT.
I was hoping for several outcomes.
1 - That she would realize that giving is a one way street and tell her grandson that the cards are gone - too late.
2 - That she would insist Axel keep some of the cards because surely neither child needs them all.
3 - That she would honor Axel for his kindness in making up for her mistake.
Axel returned from her house empty handed. Not a single card remained of the ones he had enjoyed. I couldn't help but think what a misdirected lesson in giving this was.
Shouldn't a child be able to receive graciously and without scepticism?
Today Axel asked if he could go and visit her - like he does many days after school. I said "No, not today."
It seems as though he has forgotten about yesterday. I'm still brooding. Give me a couple days.
In the meantime we are enjoying our garden and all that it freely gives. Below is what's blooming this week. Thank you to the friends who have split their plants so we could add color to our garden. Should you decide that you need to have the plants back...we have experience with that...and Axel forgives quickly.
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