The treasure of a 5-year-old

I was in New Hampshire this past weekend preparing my house for its closing. My 5-year-old son Cameron joined me in the basement on Monday to help me clean up...

It was just he and I with a task to do. We had to break apart the boxes that had accumulated over the years under the basement stairs. They had to be emptied and the boxes broken down for their trip to recycling. Cameron's job was to fill garbage bags with refuse while Daddy worked the utility knife to flatten the boxes. Cameron was on a treasure hunt. Almost every box contained something he thought was worth keeping: a tool included in a box to help with assembly, the spare part to the product we no longer had, even the pink colored wrapping paper. With few exceptions I kept him on task -- we needed to throw this stuff away. Still, it was interesting to observe that anything seemingly special was a treasure to him. He did a wonderful job with the cleanup, with a deliberate purpose that revealed his work ethic. He tired of the task prematurely (completely appropriate for his age), so we just talked while I finished. The real treasure in the basement that day was the time we spent together. Cameron never consciously noticed that treasure. Only his Dad did.

Posted: Wed - November 12, 2003 at 08:38 PM