Sometimes we moms wonder if all the repeated teachings we perform as loving parents are ever really understood; emphasis on ever. During her upbringing, My Only received every family storyline and set of values, including the proper respect one should show for the colors.
At our next downtown parade, I arranged to take her along with her little buddy. The kids had great seats because I worked right on the parade route; I could have the two of them sit along the curb and enjoy the parade until my shift began. As each unit passed by, I made the two of them stand up if the particular club or service group had an American flag color guard. I explained that we were showing respect for the flag and the military who had served under it by our standing quietly at attention. By the time the parade ended two hours later, both children said they never wanted to go to another parade with me again; they were too tired from standing up so many times!!!
More often than not, children do understand when we least expect it; to our great joy, their comprehension is often greater than the initial credit we give them at so young an age. Such was the case during a patriotic assembly at my daughter’s elementary school years ago.
The program was in full swing. The next grade to enter was my daughter’s third grade class. Nothing unusual; I saw that My Only was standing in line next to her best friend; both seemed ready and willing to participate. We two mothers were sitting together, remarking how cute the girls looked, dressed in their Sunday best. The girls filed onto the stage with their classmates.
It was then I took a double take and let out a small gasp! I remained sitting, somewhat speechless. When I recovered enough to look at my friend, she knew immediately what had taken me by surprise. We both began to smile, tempering the glee that we felt as we turned our attention again to the stage.
My Only was wearing her one pair of white gloves. She was singing with all her heart, her true blue friend standing right by her side. When the pledge was recited, the small, white clad hand held over her heart was even more visible!
I sensed neither pretense nor any foolishness from my little lady’s countenance that day. She was a genuinely focused, good student. My friend remarked that it was obvious that my daughter had comprehended the desired sense of decorum all the teachers had tried to instill to the school children for this patriotic assembly. We agreed; My Only appeared to be somewhat of a trend-setter, seemingly poised and very much at peace with herself, having accessorized her own outfit. This was all more than we could absorb; the giggling began and soon we moms were almost out of control, trying very hard to retain a bit of dignity ourselves!
To this day, I don’t believe either of us even remembers much of the assembly; but I can still remember my joy and delight at the sight of my daughter’s white gloved hands.