Special Needs Dad 365

Fill the House That Love Built
Hailey started bringing boxes into school today for her Ronald McDonald House Charities of Tampa Bay, Inc. collection. Each classroom in the Safety Harbor Montessori Academy is participating. We are grateful for their support. Hailey and Allison were able to speak to a couple classes today to tell them what the Ronald McDonald House is and how it helps families. In addition to the collection of items, the two classrooms are also donating their “Giving Jar” funds to the organization.

After Hailey was done explaining the purpose of the boxes, the class asked questions. A little girl, no older than 6 years old, said, “I’m going to bring in my Tooth Fairy money.” She also inquired about other siblings and what happens to them if the mommy and daddy are staying in the house. Allison explained that the kids can stay in the houses with their parents if a sibling is in the hospital. The student then asked, “Do they have toys for the brothers and sisters to play with there?” She was really concerned about the siblings and making sure they were okay, too.

There was something very special about this particular student. She was giving, caring, and empathetic. She was even wearing a shirt with a big heart on it. We have met many young kids over the years when teaching about special needs. This age group is open to all types of people and have not yet developed prejudices. They are curious and ask honest questions. They don’t have motives aside from wanting to know the answers.

When people say it’s good to stay young at heart, it typically means, don’t take life too seriously, laugh often, and have fun. I would like to add that it should also mean keeping an open mind like a child, accepting others no matter their medical challenges, race, or nationality, and not judging people. Perhaps we should let kindergarteners teach adults how to be kids again. I, for one, would be happy to take a class like that.