Our daughter learned a lesson this week
that was one she had to learn much too early.
This lesson broke her heart
and brought tears to my eyes as she shared the story.
Our daughter ran for Room Representative this year so she could be part of the Student Council at her elementary. Last year she ran and won the election for her third grade classroom. Last week, I helped her find a photo for her campaign poster and helped with the spacing and then watched her decorate and make it just like she wanted. She wrote her speech and practiced it several times, getting it just right. The day before the election her and a friend that was also running were talking about the election. This friend told her that if she voted for her friend, then that friend would vote for her. They even “pinky swore” on it, according to Reagan. We told Reagan that was a nice thing for her to do, but in the future, it was ok if she wanted to vote for herself. But, she was adamant that she needed to vote for her friend, that it was the right thing to do.
Election day came and as our daughter walked in the door after school, I knew by her face that she didn’t win. She was heart-broken, not because she didn’t win, but because her friend broke their promise to each other. Reagan lost by two votes to this friend, making that classmate the winner. Then found out, that friend did not vote for Reagan. That vote was the deciding vote and would have left their race in a tie. Now, who knows, how the vote would have been if there had been a tie-breaker (there were more than these two running for the spot), but Reagan’s sadness was that her friend had let her down. Yes, of course, she wanted to win. But, she also expected that friend to follow through on their promise to each other.
My only words to Reagan were,
“You did the right thing, Reagan.
You kept your word and I am very proud of you.”
In this world of vying for 15 minutes of fame, lying to get ahead,
and scheming to get the next business account,
I wanted Reagan to remember
that what REALLY matters is YOUR WORD.
If you can’t be trusted, you have nothing.
People will remember her loyalty and friendship
and someday that will come back to her twenty-fold.
Sadly, it is hard for a 9-year-old to understand all that.
So after all that was said, I just held her in my arms and sat quietly,
because, really that was all she needed.
What does your word mean to someone?
When you say you are going to do something, do you follow through?
Do you keep your promises?
This tough lesson was a reminder to me that “My Word is My Bond”.
I want to be known as someone who makes a point of keeping their word.
Thankfully, I’m glad our daughter feels the same way.
As a side note, this is just one mom sharing a lesson from our family.
I just wanted to share from Reagan’s heart and my mind about
some of these tough days,
when parenting your child and explaining life isn’t the easiest.
It was a good reminder for me
about how I honor my word and those of my friends.