Seeing the Little Things: A Mom’s View


In our bright kitchen, my daughter gave me her report card. Her messy hair bounced as she moved. She looked up at me with glasses that seemed too big for her little nose.

“Is it okay, Mommy?” she asked, sounding simple and sweet. Her finger, sticky from some snack or adventure, pointed at one part of the paper that was different from the rest.

The words there were easy: “Gets distracted when with a large group.” I had known this about her for a long time. She always liked to watch and think about everything happening around her.

I told her how well she was doing with everything else first. Then I read her the part about getting distracted. She gave a small smile and said, “I just like to look at things, Mommy.”

I got down to her level so we could see each other better, and I made sure to speak clearly and kindly:

“Yes, sweetie, you do look at lots of things. You were the one who helped Sam when he was sad and hurt at recess. You noticed when our dog, Banjo, was getting sick, and we got him to the vet just in time.”

“You saw our waitress working really hard and wanted to give her a nice tip. And you walked slowly with Grandpa in the park, so he wouldn’t be left behind.”

“Every time we go to your swim practice, you get excited about the pretty view from the bridge as if it’s all new.”

“These things you notice aren’t just daydreaming. They show you care about others, and that’s a really special thing. I hope you keep noticing and caring.”

She smiled big, really understanding what I was saying. She knew now that seeing all these little things could make a big difference.

Life is like a puzzle where everyone is hoping someone will notice them and the pieces they hold. And people who really see others, who notice the little things, they are special. They can make someone’s day better or even change the world.

As I looked at my daughter, I could tell she got it. She had this gift, and I felt so proud of her. She could see the small stuff that makes big things happen.

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