I forgot to tell you guys what happened with Lily and me last week. She and I were out picking up stuff for her birthday party that day ...so this was...Friday...and as we were leaving, we passed a young couple, maybe in their early twenties, holding a sign that said: "Out of gas. Need to get back to Texas. Anything helps."
Still driving, we chatted just a little bit about how far away from home they were but the discussion ended there. Listening to the radio, Lily's mind was still working on the couple.
Soon she said, "Mom? ...Could we give them something?"
I said, "Would you like to?"
"See what I've got in my wallet."
She said, "You've got five bucks."
"Do you want to give it to 'em?"
"Well, can we?"
"Sure! Let's go around the block."
And so we did.
She leaned out the window and handed the young man a five dollar bill. His face lit up and he thanked Lily, thanked me and his female counterpart chimed in with a happy "God bless you." I could tell their appreciation was genuine.
Now, I don't know what they were driving through Iowa for, but I saw their car nearby in the lot (they had actually been standing near it when we pulled in) and it did have Texas plates on it, so there was no second thought of Gee, I hope we're not helping them support their crazy glue addiction. But you know what? Despite that little nagging voice of skepticism, it still feels better to give SOMETHING, doesn't it?
They were grateful, she felt wonderful and I was extremely proud of my kid.
What about you? Would you encourage your child to give to a panhandler?