I was rude to a little kid but didn’t even notice.

You ever run into something, or someone, and it happens so fast you almost forget to react? Maybe you don’t even realize what’s really happening until after you experience it. Later on, you sit there and think to yourself “aw man, I wish I could go back and do that over.”

This happened to me today.

For whatever reason, there’s a bunch of kids, around 10 years old, on campus roaming around, doing a bunch of random stuff — tossing ball in the quad, running up the courts, maybe it’s a field day or something.

I don’t know.

I get to the gym and I stop by the front desk to get a locker for my bag. Out of the corner of my eye, I notice a little kid juggling by himself across the room; nothing crazy. Moments pass, I grab my key and head towards the fitness center where the boy is now just standing.

Still a good distance away, he notices me approaching. He looks forward, somewhat determined, and begins juggling once again.

I walk past him. Nothing happens.

Like I mentioned, we encounter things in our everyday lives that happen fast without notice. At times, we’re completely oblivious.

Only after the fact, after passing this little boy, did I realize what he was actually trying to do.

As most kids do, he was innocently seeking some sort of raise or excitement out of me — recognition at the very least. He probably just learned how to do that and was playfully “showing off” for someone older. I mean the kids’ alone, juggling by himself.

I gave him nothing.

There I was with this simple opportunity. Even if it was just a look of amusement or a “woah, that’s cool!” I feel like something silly like that could have made a difference. After all, juggling is difficult. I can’t juggle to save my life. It would have been genuine.

But I didn’t say anything? Why?

I guess I was mentally preoccupied, going through the motions, and I missed an easy opportunity to encourage a child. I feel bad about that. I especially didn’t want to discourage him, but that’s what I did by no reaction or response. No message is a message too, ya know.

I’m probably overthinking it (after all, it’s what I do best).

Anyways, try to be open and present in your daily life. Don’t be too cool either. You never know what’s coming.

Bored, uneducated, homeless — em dashes are my specialty. I write what I see, think, and feel. That’s it.

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