My daughter came over tonight to pick up Brayden, my 6-year-old grandson that I had picked up from elementary school. She brought over her Keaton, her 3-year-old as well. The boys were running around the house chasing one another as Victoria and I caught up on the day’s activities in her life and in mine.
Brayden loves sports so he wanted to watch some college basketball before his mother came. While they were there, the game was about to start and a woman came on the TV singing the national anthem. I decided to sing along with her and match her beautiful voice with mine. A side bar.
I have always thought I had a pretty good voice when it comes to music. I can carry a tune and have sung in choirs in church was well as the men’s glee club when I was in college (40+ years ago). I do love to sing loud which over the years has been embarrassing to my children who have stood next to me in church. I have heard more than a hand full of times to sing softer. Well, back to the story.
I was singing the national anthem and when I got done, my 3-year-old grandson Keaton looked at me and said, “You hurt my ears, PAPA!” I had no idea. He was verbalizing his feelings that his mother taught him to verbalize, that I taught her to verbalize. I truly didn’t mean to hurt his ears and asked him if he wanted me to kiss his ears. He said, “Yes” so I pulled him close and gently kissed his ears and off he went.
You see, I had no idea that what I was doing was hurting my grandson. Fortunately he told me and I could take steps to repair the situation. How many times do we find ourselves hurting someone and never knowing that we are hurting them. We are insensitive to what we are saying or doing that is causing pain in those around us.
If there is one quality that I could give everyone that I come in contact with, that one quality would be sensitivity. You see sensitivity comes before initiative. I have to be sensitized to what I am doing wrong before I can take the initiative to change whatever I’m doing. I know that being a sensitive man is not in the book of a macho man, but it is an essential quality if we are going to build connected relationships.
On this journey open your ears to those around you (including the little ones in our lives) so that we don’t hurt the ones we love.