Kids Emulate Courage and Kindness

If you haven't seen Disney's newly released "Cinderella", I promise this will not be a spoiler. On Friday, we were privileged to view it with two of our grand daughters, and something struck me as a vital component to a child's character--and no it isn't a glass slipper. 

It is simply the words, courage and kindness. These are the words Cinderella's mother gave her daughter to live by, and they are character traits I believe are inherent in every child. 

What does it mean for kids to have courage and kindness? It means that they have have an inborn strength that allows them to face danger, fear, pain, grief, and sadness with compassion, empathy, bravery, boldness, and spunk. It allows them to face the ravages of cancer, disease, loneliness, abandonment, and hunger. And, it is the kindness in them that is seen when they smile through their pain to offer comfort to another child, a parent, a grandparent, or even a stranger in need. 

Yes, there are many kids who no longer display their kindness or courage. But, this is not their fault. It is ours--we adults who pride ourselves with being wiser in the ways of the world are to blame. The kids without courage and kindness have had it squished out of them. Their role models have not emulated courage or kindness. They have not worked to build self-esteem, honesty, and self-worth in the children trusted to their care. And, in my opinion, they have failed as role models be they parents, caregivers, grandparents, teachers, aunts, uncles, or whatever. 

If you are a trusted role model of a child, take stock of yourself. Do you emulate courage and kindness to the child or children in your care? While it is true that "Cinderella" is just a movie, courage and kindness are inherent values in all of us. I know because I have witnessed it time and time again. 

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