Where are you, Mindy? and “Snails are lucky..”

9.99.

That’s how much satellite radio costs per month.

“…excuse me. I just finished the two month free trial. Had a question, how much does this cost?”

“Sir…9.99 per month.”

“Hmm…well, honestly, I just want one station. Can you just give me one station? I just want ‘Kids Place Live'”

“No, sir…we don’t have the capability to just give you one station. It’s a package.”

It’s this lady’s fault:

Absolutely Mindy

Absolutely Mindy

Who is this lady? She is a satellite radio station host named Absolutely Mindy. All morning she plays kids songs and has phone call conversations with kids…she is funny…and goofy…and my little one absolutely loves her. But, my two month free trial is over…and now our traffic filled drives are filled with radio stations that just talk and talk. And this is what happened this morning:

“Daddy, I saw a person with no home. He was sleeping on the ground.”

“What? When did you see this?”

“Yesterday…he was sleeping near a building. He has no home. Why…why…why do some people have no home?”

I didn’t know what to say. Do I give her the famous, “I don’t know…go ask your mom.” She is six years old. What will she take from this conversation? After an eternity I said:

“There could be many reasons, Bug…maybe something happened with their job and they cannot afford a place to stay?”

I hoped that would satisfy her question. Nope.

“Well, what about family? Friends? Can they stay with family…friends who have a home?”

Where are you, Mindy? Can you help me with this one?

“Bug, sometimes people go through tough times. And this might be a tough time for that person. And what do we do for people who are going through tough times?”

She thought about it…

“We help?”

“Yes…we help. We help people ok? That’s what we are supposed to do. People need to help people. Ok?”

She let the thought set in her mind.

“I have money, Daddy. I have three dollars in my purse. I can help.”

My eyes began to water. “That’s good baby. We always need to help others..ok?”

It was silent. I looked at the rear view window. My little one stared out the window absorbing the thought of homelessness. I was so proud of her. My wife and I believe we have a purpose to help others. And our little one is starting to understand the need for helping and healing the world. My future Nobel Peace Prize winner went back to being a kid again:

“Snails are lucky….they always have a home. They bring their home with them wherever they go.”

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10 thoughts on “Where are you, Mindy? and “Snails are lucky..”

  1. Here’s a little tip – ignore the first few notices you get that the satellite radio trial has expired. Pretend you don’t want it. They’ll start dropping the price. My husband really didn’t want it after his trial expired, and eventually that price went down to $5 a month. He still didn’t want it. But for you, that might work out – if you can find some other way to amuse Bugs for the time being.

    • Thank you so much! The conversations I have like this make me sad. As adults, we know how bad and hard this world can be. Life is not easy…and many people have difficult lives. We all struggle, but others have it much worse. And to explain that to a child is eye-opening. The concept of someone being homeless is complex…and I had no clue what to say. I did not want my little one worrying about things like that…but I wanted her to know the importance of helping others. And I know there are many more tough questions to come…like bullying…racism…war…death…maybe I can pull the “go ask you mom” phrase then? lol

      • I had this conversation with my son when he was probably four or five, it’s never, ever easy and is, as you say, complicated. I also stressed to him the importance of helping people, just like people helped us. I also tried to explain to him the importance of helping people responsibly so that it actually helps the person and doesn’t enable others or themselves to further hurt their situation. That sometimes,w hen people are hurting they don’t know how to stop hurting and need someone to show them how to be happy again. Just like how when someone is unkind to him he needs to show them kindness while still keeping himself safe. There are some things she will feel more comfortable discussing with you, especially when it comes to things that make her feel insecure or unsafe, you’re her dad, her protector. It’s coming…

      • Sometimes we wish we had instruction manuals for this kinda stuff lol. We have dogs…and two of them are getting up there in age…and I know the conversation about death could be coming up sooner than later.

      • Be glad it’s waited this long. Mourning a friend or friendship is natural and needs to be approached as such, in my mind. Lots of hugs and good memories to be shared.

  2. Oh man I teared up reading this!! Such a sweet girl. You handled it well. A great explanation that was on her level and not too many details. She will understand what homelessness is all too soon.. but for now that was enough.

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