Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Note of Apology


It’s her birthday and I’m watching her start to write a letter just after breakfast.

“Who’s Christina?” I ask.

“Oh, she’s this girl in my VBS class.”

“Why are you apologizing to her?”

“Well…we were getting ready to play this game and she said, ‘I’m picking Tommy to be on my team because I don’t like you.’ “

“So why are you apologizing? Did you say something mean to her? Did you accidentally push her?”

All these questions and more I ask knowing what the answer will be.

“No,” she replies.

“What do you have to apologize for? I don’t understand.”

And yet I do and my heart hurts for her. My girlie is wanting to apologize because Christina doesn’t like her and she doesn’t know why. She figures it must be her fault.

How do I explain to one so young that kids’ can be mean? (Adults are no exception to this rule, but you know the saying.) How do I tell her that she probably did nothing really for this girl to decide to not like her since they had been together all of 6 hours over a span of two days and had never set eyes on one another before VBS began? How do you explain not everyone will like you no matter how nice you are to them?

But her feelings are hurt and she doesn’t understand what she did wrong. I understand (Seventh grade, need I say more?) and I feel for her, I just don’t know what to say.

I suppose I should have let her finish writing her note- but I don’t. My mama pride and a little bit of anger well up in me so I tell her, “I am not seeing anything you should apologize for so why don’t you just stop?” (When will I ever learn it isn’t about me?)

In truth it might have made her heart feel all the better if she had been able to write and deliver that note. Oh, she might have been rejected again by Christina but then again she might not have. All I know is she would not be left to wonder what she did because she would know that she did her best and tried to be a good friend.

I regret I didn’t let her finish and I am even sorrier she thinks there might be something wrong or unlovable about her that makes someone decide they don’t want to be her friend. But can I say there’s nothing wrong with you, it’s her? I can not. So I’m stuck.

She is a little late to this game, at age 9, since we homeschool. She would have been inducted long ago into this friendship game, if she attended school. She already would have known kids’ will be mean and people can choose to not like you just because. Just because.

Awk, now it’s me who is needing to apologize. Such a bud-in-ski I have been. I’ll be telling her how I love her and tossing in some truths about how much the Lord loves her. About how that love is never changing, always constant, always strong, never failing- the REAL truth about how she is loved and liked.


Margie said...

Aww, Jess, this has made my heart hurt too. Brian talks of the socalization that kids get in public school as the reason for us not to home school, but when I hear things like this it makes me wonder if it is worth it. Aidan struggled with some kids for the first time this year after the move. It was so hard for me as a Mom, Brian was even ready to yank him out of school and put him in a private school that costs more than my college did. Kids are mean and that is just how it is unfortunately. Not everyone is taught to be kind and include others unfortunately. Hugs to you and her and remember we love you!

Christine said...

You have it right on, Momma. All we really need to know is that Jesus loves us so very much.

The problem with public school is that before kids have a chance to really learn this truth at their core, they get corrupted by the broken social structure offered them.

Praying for both of you! Lovely post!

Michelle ~ Blogging from the Boonies said...

Even though we homeschool, we have witnessed a bit of this twinged-with-drama kind of scenario. It sure does hurt and I understand your desire to be a butt-in-ski! As moms, we want to fix these issues as quickly as we can, but a lot of times it needs to play itself out in order for healing to happen. I'm sorry that your little girl has been hurt.

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