Kindness is on the Rise

During a moment of silence at a high school assembly for the lives lost in the recent school shooting, I finally let myself feel the sadness and horror of it all. I allowed myself to marinate in my feelings about the magnitude of that event.

It was easier to hang out with anxiety about the possibility of my life being devastated at the hands of a future active shooter, than to feel the deeper feelings.

Sitting in a large gymnasium full of students who were appreciating their senior class, melted through my layer of anxiety. This was what I witnessed…

Students sat in chairs inside little wading pools wearing shower caps. They played a song, and when the song stopped, a student had to say what words came next. If they lost, they had chocolate cake batter poured over their heads. There was laughter and silliness, but there was FAR more kindness than I ever would’ve expected at a high school assembly.

Students poured the batter over other students’ heads carefully, trying not to get it into their eyes.

Their words were,

“I really do hope you brought a change of clothes.”

“I’m sorry about that.”

“Oh Geez! That’s messy.”

and then,..

“If anyone in the audience wants to help out, they can. Just jump in whenever.” They didn’t want to have to pour the batter over their heads. Instead, they wanted to see each other win.

My high school assemblies were far more competitive and wild. We didn’t hold back like that. When students at my high school were given the green light to do stuff like that, they just went for it. The pie was smooshed into a face with a firm twist and a roar of laughter. It’s not like that anymore.

The world is too harsh to be that way now.

Kids are out there looking out for each other, taking care of each other. They’re still having the same traditional fun, they’re just mindful and considerate. They’re emotionally evolved.

There’s so much to fix. I wish it wasn’t up to them to save the world, but it is…

and I believe in them.

With that being said, I have a side note..

One day during spirit week was “white lie” day. Students wore white t-shirts with white lies written on them like, “I’m never late,” or “I don’t believe in aliens.” Many of the white lies were light hearted, but a lot of them were sad. Some said, “I have a dad,”…”My dad loves me,”…and, “I was not a mistake.”

Dear children,

I see you. I hear you. I care.

No further comment.

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