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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Take In The Strays

Last Friday night I attended the high school football game with the family. My oldest son is in the marching band this year so we were excited to see him perform. I sat with a group of his friends and as we saw kids we had not seen in a while I would excitedly say "Hey, there is so & so!" as if I were his/her long lost friend. I was just excited to see all the kids back together again after a long and busy summer break where there was little time for friends.

I saw a boy who I will call Brian. I pointed him out and I said "Awe, I feel sad for him. He's walking around all alone. No parents. No girlfriend on his arm. No friends. He looked lonely. He looked sad about being lonely. I told the kids that I felt sorry for him. I wanted to invite him up to sit.

I take in strays like that.

One of the kids said "I don't feel sorry for him. He has no one to blame but himself. He chooses to be mean to others. He treats us as if he is better than  everyone else. It wouldn't surprise me if he did think he was dating "Lisa" when they weren't."

I was shocked. I never knew this boy was not liked. I knew he had found his way into some trouble last school year but I thought that was a one time situation. Apparently this kids attitude had landed him a seat on the loner bus, ticket for one.

I still felt sad for the boy. I watched him roam alone off and on throughout the night and I really wanted to say something to him but feared I would look like a creeper. Not trying to catch me some jail bait so I let it go...or so I thought.

On Monday I picked my oldest up from practice after school. As we drove away he thought he has seen Brian's parent's car. I said I didn't know why he would be there. He had quit all the extra curriculars he had been participating in. My son then tells me that he had seen Brian in the halls that day in school. I asked him if he said anything to Brian. My son said that he did say Hi to Brian. He said that Brian said Hello back to him.

My son told me that he too had felt badly for Brian. He understood why his friends didn't like him but he also knows that his friends have mistreated each other a time or two over the years and they always forgive.

I was so proud of him. I told him that we don't know what happens in Brian's house. Brian's parents are divorced. I am sure he gets shuffled around a lot. It can be a taxing situation with even the bed co-parenters.
I told my son that we have to remember that when other people are being mean that they may be having problems at home. Maybe they are being picked on at school. Maybe they are the black sheep on the team.

The reason I am so willing to take in strays is because...they need the love more than anyone else.

I suggested that perhaps my son give a casual hello to Brian every now and then, and perhaps he may befriend Brian and help show him some much needed love if he is ready to receive it.

I sure hope Brian knows how lucky he could be to have a friend like my Andrew. He's as good as gold and one of a kind as far as friends go.

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