Parents who say they don’t brag about their kids are either liars or parents of burgeoning felons. In that spirit, I would like to dedicate this post to my eight year old daughter, Blair.I live in a 100 year old house surrounded by 75 foot tall trees. Our neighborhood is infamous for its old trees and copious leaves. It is not unusual for someone to ring doorbells with a rake in hand asking to rake your yard for cash, or clean your gutters, or whatever. Today, Antoine knocked on our door. He didn’t have the usual sales pitch. Instead, he led with, “I was incarcerated for 11 years. I’m unemployed and trying to earn money to get something for my family to eat for Thanksgiving.” Most people would have shut the door on him at that point, but I’m not most people. I’m stupid.Blair was standing next to me as Antoine made his sales pitch on the porch. While I was assessing whether Antoine had any teardrop tattoos on his cheek, Blair ran up the stairs and screamed, “Hold on a minute!” I explained that I didn’t have any work for him to do, as I’d already promised another gentleman the joy of raking my yard. Blair came barreling down the stairs and handed her piggy bank to Antoine. He was speechless, then stammered around. “It has $15.90 inside,” Blair informed him. Antoine hesitated taking it, but I convinced him that she had done it of her own volition and that he should take it.
Kudos to me for finding a picture of a piggy bank with a teardrop tattoo!
Blair asked me if I thought Antoine might be lying about why he needed the money. “Maybe, sweetheart, but let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. If he gets bourbon, let it be good bourbon. The point is that you gave something to someone who needed it.” In that beautiful moment, I totally forgave Blair for leaving inside-out underwear in the bottom of her closet. And I cried an actual tear! Parents should get their own teardrop tattoos to remind us that our children really aren’t hellbent on our destruction or to destroy our sanity. Every so often, they let you know that they’ve been listening, just a little.