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March 23, 2018 - Stacey Sacco
My kindergartener proudly told me she was invited to the Cool Club by another classmate. I’m not sure what special privileges accompany membership in this group. Probably just whatever strikes the founding member’s fancy on any particular day. After all, it’s a group of six-year-olds. However, in her small private school class of only eight, I wonder who is being left out of the Cool Club. While I may inwardly roll my eyes at the idea of an exclusive group of kindergarteners, I have talked to her about social interactions in this context.

My first reaction was to tell her that no boy gets to tell her that she is in or out. I learned quickly that my feminism has no real appeal to her so instead we talked about making sure everyone who wants to be included gets the chance.

I certainly understand that my child will get along better with some kids than other, but that is never a reason to be exclusionary. There are plenty of spots in the Cool Club to go around. She doesn’t have to be best friends with everyone. She does have to be considerate and kind. No matter what her friends are doing. Life is not a competition. It’s a cooperative activity.

In some things, kids are competing. Only one team can win the championship. Not everyone can get first place in the spelling bee, science fair or math competition. Standardized testing is based on a bell curve of scores, kids falling all along that line. Colleges only accept so many applicants and employers only hire a set number of people. Sometimes they’ll win. Sometimes they’ll lose.

But so many other things are not competitions. There are not a limited number of friends we are allotted. There is a not a finite amount of love or acceptance or grace. There is not a cap to the number of parents who think their children are geniuses. We can ALL have extraordinary kids.

In the world of an American adult, there is very little we are competing for. If we don’t get one job, there will be another. If we aren’t the highest bid on one house, there are a hundred more to tour. Clothes, cars, jewelry, furniture, home decor and anything else we buy is mass manufactured. There are more than we can count. Although it’s hard to believe by looking at some societies that have been left behind, there is enough money, food and water for every person living on earth today.

So what if we lived with the mind-set of abundance instead of scarcity. What if we truly believed there is enough for everyone- that there is enough success, attention, money and intelligence for us all? I’ve been trying it out. I’ve noticed when I start feeling anxious, it’s about scarcity. It’s a fear of not being enough and not having enough or having to compete with other people for something I’m scared i’m lacking in.

Too often, we panic because someone may try to take what we think should be OURS. But what if there is enough for us all? Enough social media “likes.” Enough praise for our effort and success. Enough space at the top. Enough love from a God who is nothing but love. Everyone can learn the math skills or complete the novel or play baseball. I don’t want to spend my time competing for a resource there is an abundance of. If one opportunity isn’t mine, another will be. I want to work hard for myself AND for other people. I want to share the wealth of life because it’s not really fun without someone else on the ride. The Cool Club should be open to us all.


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