Tuesday, August 12, 2014

August 12, 2014 - Empathy

This past Wednesday, Grace got injured on our trampoline.  She was jumping and came down on her ankle, twisting it in a weird way and maybe tearing some ligaments.  Basically, she sprained it.  While so thankful that it wasn't broken, we felt really bad for her because it was painful (swollen and bruised - luckily not too badly) and because the next day was Kindergarten orientation. She was a wee bit dramatic about it (my sister asked me when I told her this, "Where on earth do you think she got that from?") but by the next morning she had adapted to having her ankle wrapped, hopping or crawling around as needed.  For orientation, the plan was that Kristoffer would carry her all around for the tour of the very large campus (which he did).

I tell this story because when we were driving to the school on Thursday morning for orientation, something intereting happened.  We were sitting in some traffic and a man came along the road asking for money at all of the driver windows - he had only one leg and only one arm.  Normally we don't give money - that's another discussion right there if you want to have it - and I didn't have any on me anyway so sort of waved to him with a shrug saying "Pole, not today."  Grace watched the interaction and then said: "Mama do you know what? I feel really bad for that man because he doesn't have a leg and I know how it feels if you can only walk on one leg."  

And just like, she understands the concept of empathy. It was a small moment, but a "big" one as well.  And we were very happy that she could walk this weekend and didn't have to wear her ankle wrapped to school for the first time yesterday.  She still has a small limp, but otherwise bounced back very quickly.  I love that she is at an age to start understanding bigger concepts about human emotion and relationships.  It's fascinating and inspiring, equally.


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