Last night, The Boy chastised me rather forcefully at the dinner table because I neglected to send him to school with a shoe box. They’ll be decorating shoe boxes at the end of this week, you see, to collect canned food and other non-perishables for a local food pantry.
“Mom!” he said admonished me. “You forgot! You have to read the yellow paper that I got yesterday!” (He really meant to say “Friday”.)
So this morning, I made certain to put a shoe box in his backpack and explained that he’ll have to carry his lunch box because the shoe box took up all the room. He was fine with that, and we left for school without incident. (Well, except for the yogurt issue, but by now that had already been resolved.)
We arrived at school a little early, about 10 minutes before the faculty came out of the building to begin the morning drop off loop. When this happens, I usually roll down the windows and climb into the back seat next to The Boy. It gives us a chance to talk a bit more about whatever is on his mind.
“You know, Mom,” he said knowledgeably, “some kids don’t have mommies or daddies and they don’t got nothing to eat. And that’s why we have to bring canned food for them.”
“Yes, that’s true,” I said slowly. “But you know, some of those kids do have their mommies and daddies, but their parents may not have enough money to buy food to feed everyone. So yes, that’s why it’s important to bring food.”
“And if they don’t got food, they won’t grow big and strong,” he said.
“You’re absolutely right.”
He paused thoughtfully for a moment, then said, “I have enough to eat. I’m going to grow big and strong.”
“Yes, you will.” I gave him a quick kiss on the cheek. “You’re very lucky, you know.”
“Yeah,” he replied. “I have a mommy and a daddy. And I get enough food.”
“Yes. You are a very lucky boy.”
“I know that, Mom!”
I relayed this conversation to Cute Husband tonight to share what a thoughtful child we have. Clearly, they’re talking about the purpose and importance of the food drive in class, for which I am glad.
The Boy really does have a soft heart.