A few years ago we spent Christmas in Philly with my long time friend Angel. Ace unwrapped his gifts from her and was delighted to get the exact toy he had wanted and neutral on his new outfit. It was to be expected. He was 7 years old and toys are preferable to clothes at that age.
Jay also got 2 gifts. The toy, I remember, was a Danny Phantom action figure and motor bike. Back then, 5 year old Jay wasn’t at the point yet where we could ask him what he would like and get an answer so all gifts were best guesses. He was not at all pleased with his toy. That was fine with Ace who was a fan of Danny Phantom so he kindly took over ownership. To make matters worse, for Jay, he opened his 2nd box only to discover that he too had gotten a new outfit. Well, he threw it across the room and said “That’s not a present. It’s just clothes.”
At the time, we were so happy that he was saying ANYTHING that we didn’t get mad at his rudeness and fortunately Angel totally understood and thought it was actually funny.
Back in September, we found an amazing tutor for the boys. She comes to our home twice a week and works with them one on one to help them with their school work and study techniques etc. The boys actually look forward to her coming. Earlier this week she came over for her regularly scheduled session and had totally, unexpectedly, brought gifts for us all. (We had a gift for her too).
Ace opened his gift first and was overjoyed with his candy and new book. He hugged her big and told her how it was his favourite book series and not only that, but this particular book, was on his favourtie topic. That’s a little bit of an exaggeration but he was happy and she was thrilled.
Jay opened his candy and his book and solemnly said, “I don’t like it, but thank you.” Then he too gave her a hug.
He went on to congratulate himself by saying, “That was good right? Even if you don’t like something you should still say thank you.”
We all got a good laugh and told him that yes, he had done a great job of being polite and he may end up liking the book after all once he read it.
I don’t know about you, but this counts as major progress in my book. Thank you very much.