I really enjoy the differences in my kids. It is truly astonishing to me sometimes that all 5 of them are the product of me and my husband. I mean, we are the same 2 people, how are the kids so vastly different?? But, they are. And it is fun. :)
I think sometimes about the age old question of "nature or nurture?" That debate must go on and on and on and on because there is not one correct answer. Sure, I like to think that some of the qualities my kids possess are because of the environment they are being raised in, but some of who they are has obviously been stamped on their DNA since before they ever laid eyes on me.
I have a couple of kids who are particularly empathetic which is wonderful, but also very, very difficult for me. It's not that I don't want them to care about others, I do! I just don't want it to be so hard on them to see other people struggle.
I'll give you an example.
Last night, the boys watched the Bee Movie which Pierce had never seen. There is a part in the movie when a character shoots Pooh Bear with a tranquilizer dart so they can steal his honey.
Pierce was devastated.
He said to me through his tears, "But now, Pooh Bear won't have any honey. And he will be hungry. Why would they do that?? They were so mean to Pooh Bear!" They he wiped his eyes and tried to stop crying. It took a good 20 minutes before he was over it.
Oh, my poor, sweet boy. I shudder to think what will happen when you realize that there are people in our own country who don't have enough to eat. :( Kids you know that don't have the support of a loving family. Kids in other places who are getting sick because they don't own a pair of shoes and worms get in through their feet.
It gives me pause. He has that heart for a reason and I know it. Perhaps when he is older he will champion the cause of stamping out hunger Or maybe he will go to other countries and put shoes on the feet of those children.
I have no doubt that a heart like that is a gift. I know that empathy is a strength.
But, wow, I'm really glad I have a couple of kids that can just laugh at Pooh Bear and get on with their day. :)