Life Lessons

How do you explain stealing to a two year old?  No, my two year old didn't steal, she got something stolen from her.  I'm not sure what is worse; that something was stolen or that it was allowed.
Here's what happened.  
We went to the Doctor's office for the two month check up.  Big T insisted on bringing her sunglasses, stuffed duck and her boy named Sue (a Pinocchio toy from some happy meal or something, you can thank her Dad for her naming him Sue!).  We got all checked in and sat down to fill out the info sheet, I asked her if she needed to go to the bathroom before we went back to see the Doctor and she did, so we went.  When we came out the nurse was waiting for us, so we went right back.  We got into the room, answered a couple of questions, got the little guy undressed for his weight check and that's when I realized we didn't have any of her stuff with us.  The nurse asked what we were missing and went on a hunt for it.  She came back with Sue and the sunglasses but there was no duck to be found.  The entire office staff looked for that duck including our Doctor.  Nothing.  As we left the building we checked at the main reception desk, but no one had turned anything in.  She took my name and number just in case, but we all know we won't be getting a phone call.
The ride home was filled with this conversation" "Where did my duck go?", "I don't know sweetie, I think someone took it", "Those boys?" (there had been some boys in the waiting room), "I don't know, it may have been those boys or someone else", "OK, and then they send my duck back to me?", "Maybe, but I don't think so, they don't know where you live".  It went on for a bit and then I think she sort of got it because she would say, "Those boys took my duck". And when we got home it was full on tears, a stolen duck coupled with no nap and a flu shot....she was not a happy camper.

Here is my beef.  This duck was not an inexpensive duck, $5 from Kohl's, and it's not even a beef with the kids (I assume a child took it), I can understand a little kid seeing a cool little stuffed animal just sitting there and wanting to play with it or take it.  What I don't get is what kind of parent, upon seeing their child with a toy that they obviously didn't leave the house with, lets that child keep that toy?? I would have marched that kid back in and made him/her give it back or take it to the lost and found because you know there is some kid out there missing it.  It made me quite angry at that parent, that they would not insist the child return it.  Now of course I am assuming the parent saw the duck, knew it didn't belong to their kid...maybe not, but I know I would notice my child carrying a large stuffed duck that didn't belong to her!

Thankfully there is a light in this story.  When we got home, I got a phone call from a friend who needed to stop by to use the bathroom because their water was turned off due to some repairs, and she asked what the crying was for.  I told her, and a few hours later we had a knock on our door.  It was two of her kids with a stuffed duck!  It wasn't the same stuffed duck, but Miss T was so excited! It was such a thoughtful gesture to do that for her, she was very happy and her new little duck quickly became a new friend.
So, while there are definitely parents out there who need to open their eyes, there are parents out there who go above and beyond, even for small things.  Thank you!


Grandma Smith said...

So sorry to hear about duck being stolen, Miss T. loved that duck. Hopefully some kid got home with it stuffed under his shirt and his mom will see it and make sure it is returned today. Probably won't happen but where the parent is lacking in ethics the duck will make up in love to some kid. What nice friends you have to bring her a new duck, that is so neat. And what an amazing lesson she taught her children yesterday in honesty, compassion, and charity. I wish all parents could be so wise.

Mindi said...

What a thoughtful friend you have!

Once we walked out of Rite Aid and I was across the street and down a few blocks before I noticed a Butterfinger candy bar sitting neatly on Jack's lap as he sat in the stroller (he may have been about two at the time). I was surprised and then a little embarrassed. Did my little boy just steal this? This thing he didn't even know what it was? I asked him about it and he seemed surprised himself. He had no interest in it, it was just sitting there, on his lap. He said I left before he could put it back. Honestly, I don't think he knew what to do with it, but didn't say anything to me either.
Well, in my head I was thinking.. do I take it back? What do I say? it was no temptation to me.. I don't even like Butterfingers, so I walked back to the store. I was not sure Jack really knew what he was doing, so I didn't think it would have been appropriate to make him apologize for "stealing" it. So, instead, I walked in and handed it to the manager who was standing just inside the door. I explained that during check out my son was playing with the candy bars (right in front of their face in a stroller, what kid wouldn't?!), but I walked out not realizing that one was on his lap. The manager laughed at me and said, "You should have just kept it!" Seriously??

He's done the same thing with a shirt from GAP before too... down the street before I noticed... took it back a day later and just left it on a rack. Promise my kids not a clepto.

Guess I had should keep a better eye on my kids, eh? :)