Sunday, August 14, 2011

Were did appreciation go?

Constant gift giving, traveling, vacationing and down right getting whatever she has wanted this summer has changed my daughter. Unfortunately not for the better. The only family we have in New York City is my father so whenever we go visit one of my many sisters or mom and step dad my daughter gets too spoiled.

They will say things like "We don't see her that often." "Come on don't be such a joy kill." or the one that I despise the most but doesn't come that often "Don't worry what your mommy says I'm your__ and you can listen to me."
I don't mind my daughter getting things but I don't like her being showered with material possessions because they are just that material things that she will out grow and lose interest in once something else comes along.

While in Michigan my daughter got a toy EVERYDAY! Ice cream and sweets copious amounts of times and got to stay up late all the time. All things that are HUGE no no's for me but I let them slide because "We don't see her that often."

What a mistake!
Now my daughter has lost the characteristic of appreciation, the one thing I worked SO HARD to get her to understand. Now as you all know its back to school season and that means new clothes, new shoes, new craft supplies and in some cases fast food pit stops. Coming home from a SPOILcation and then being, in her eyes, spoiled all over again because of back to school shopping has only made the problem worse. I have also given her the talk about how important it is to give back and how so many people have little or less then we do and it is our personal responsibility to give and appreciate what we have. However, it seems that these talks have fallen on closed ears and while I give her these talks I can see it in her eyes that shes not listening and simply thinking of the next thing she can acquire.

Today I was literally just sorting through a pile of give away clothing when I had to stop and write this post out of sheer frustration! As I was sorting my daughter saw a winter shirt that I plan on giving away and said she wanted it, I stop and consider keeping it because it looks like it can still fit her this coming winter. THEN she says I want it because I have .... No clothes. My brain went ARE YOU #*@$! KIDDING ME?! But instead I said well what about all the new clothes you got yesterday? Her reply : what clothes? WHAT!?!?! I shouted and grabbed her shirts she wanted to keep and I even considered keeping and threw them back into the bag.

Now I know that I am also to blame for letting this GETTING FIASCO get out of hand and that's why I am going to check myself twice before agreeing or buying anything else.

She is now on, what I will call, Operation Get Absolutely Nothing. Every bed time story she gets will be about getting too much, appreciation and giving. I will not have my daughter be some spoiled child that doesn't understand the basic act of appreciation and how much work goes into being able to provide these nice things for her and the overwhelming amount of children that have absolutely nothing.

I have been wanting to take her to a homeless shelter to help volunteer and to see first hand the importance of giving back, appreciation and the reality that many children and families face of having nothing or just enough. I think now is the perfect time.
Good Will or Salvation Army are honestly not the first choice that comes to mind when it comes to giving because they still sell the clothing and the reality is that many people can't even afford the prices sometimes. So I would rather give the items personally to those in need.
Now don't let me confuse you I LOVE these stores and give to them all the time. I also believe that they do wonderful work for the needy, the planet and families at large. As a child this is where I got my Christmas, Thanksgiving and back to school clothes from. However, nothing compares to seeing the look of appreciation on a families face when you personally give to them.

Now I will go back to putting together my donation pile and stop being so stingy myself and give a LOT MORE of my own things away. Lead by example!
Now one of my many task to achieve is instilling appreciation back into my daughter.
I will be sure to let you all know how it goes.
Thank you for reading :)