Saturday, April 24, 2010
Kids and Money
Several months ago, Noah let me know that his bike was getting too small. It did look like it was the size for a small seven-year-old and not for my growing almost-10 year old. I encouraged him to start saving his money, and to be patient and diligent, and before he knew it, he'd have enough to buy one himself.
Little did I know that this would be almost as hard for me as for him!
I made him a little chart to hang up to track his progress saving, and in the meantime, watched him ride around on his comically-small bike along his friends on their appropriately-sized bikes. I have to tell you that this made me feel like a bad mom. I kept thinking, "Oh, I could just go give him the rest of the money and we could go get a bike today! He's been so faithful to save and wait patiently...." But I knew that this would thwart the lesson we were trying to teach him; one that kids need so desperately in our culture of immediate gratification.
So, I held on. Even when a neighbor offered for Noah to borrow her son's old bike. She completely meant this as a kind gesture, but I felt a bit embarrassed. We can afford to get him a new bike, I wanted to say. We're just trying to teach him to save his own money for something he really wants...But I didn't.
The happy day did finally come when we made a beeline for Wal-Mart and picked up the bike. We held up the check-out line as many small bills were fished out of pocket and wallet. I was so proud of him.
And proud of me. :)