Giving Back

back to school: prep your kids with kindness

(photo taken in India, my daughter donating school supplies to children of an ashram we love)

The summer has slowed down somewhat and the while the sand still makes it way inside our home from beachy days, all this back to school prep has started to get us into gear for the fall.

While searching for a few empty notebooks I had stashed that my daughter could use in September, I came upon a journal I had kept while pregnant with her baby brother. This entry stood out to me…

“Baby B- There are not many things I know about your personality. Will you be spunky like your sister? I’m not sure. This kicking has got me believing it though! I don’t know how much of it you are already born with and how much you learn from me or your dad. No matter what though, I will love you. I wish for you to always know this. I also wish for you to always find kindness in your heart. In whatever you do, wherever you go, let it be your answer to anything that feels scary, exciting, sad, happy. The thing about kindness my sweet boy, is that it can carry you anywhere. It fits into any place, any emotion. Even anger. I am trying to do that myself, even in times it feels impossible. It makes me stronger and builds my patience. It allows me to feel…with every fiber of my being. And that all makes me know more and more that I am ready to meet you. I cannot wait to see your kind eyes and feel your big shining heart. Love, your momma.”

Now that he’s born and also gearing up for preschool, I am reminded of this wish. With so much abundance in our lives, the way to start a new endeavor like school…should be to give back to others.

It is a blessing that my kids are able to purchase what they need on their back to school lists and pick out new clothes to wear on their first day. The other Chai Mommas and I have reflected on our own first generation childhoods many times and we all have stories of the sacrifices our immigrant parents made to allow for a new L.L. Bean backpack, the new style of Keds, the full on Trapper Keeper vs. the generic brand. (did anyone else have Lisa Frank folders?!?) and so much more.

This week, while my kids and I parade around Target and stock up on non toxic markers and marble notebooks, we’ll put some extra items in our cart and donate to a local cause where kids can start school the same way my kids can.

So that my kids know that when we have, we give.

Plus with all of the scary stuff that can happen with these mass shootings…since kindness makes the world go round, it is the most important back to school prep we’ll be doing.

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