I was talking to a friend from high school the other day (actually we were instant messaging), and out of nowhere she thanked me for being nice to her in high school. She said that my Mom raised me right and should be proud that I was kind to people. I shared that with my Mom. The truth is she did raise me to be kind. She instilled kindness very early. Both of my parents are kind people and they demonstrated kindness often throughout my childhood and still do.

I don’t consciously think about kindness a lot, but I know I hope Charlee is kind. Mike is very kind and I think I am too. Today I found myself thinking about kindness after a situation at work. When is it acceptable to be mean to or bully another person? I think it is very hard to justify meanness or to abuse power or to bully. True leaders don’t need to use these tactics.

After having Charlee, things impact me differently. The type of situation that happened at work happens often and in the past I would think about it but not much time would pass before I was on to something else. Today, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. And more importantly, started thinking about how I would feel if Charlee treated somebody that way. I would be mortified. So, how do you teach a child to be kind, to care about others, to be respectful?

During Charlee’s dedication at church we prayed for various things for her but one of the things we prayed and we continue to pray for is that she has a kind heart. Mike says he can already tell that she is kind by looking into her eyes. I hope he is right because I can’t imagine her growing up to be a “mean” girl. When did it become cool to be mean or to bully?

I hope we are half as successful as Mike’s Mom and my parents were in teaching kindness.