February 28, 2004, Category: Family

Mikayla’s Dilemma

A couple weeks ago Mikayla brought home a school project for the American Heart Association. They were doing a fund raiser by having the kids solicite money from friends and family. Mikayla was really excited to do it and talked a lot about raising money for people who have strokes.

As the deadline approached, she started asking me how much I’d give her for the program. I also heard her talking a lot about which prize she would be getting. Prize? Turns out that she gets different prizes based on how much money she raises. She said the prize wasn’t the important thing, that she was doing it for the money…and I believe her. I’m not sure why I did this next thing. Maybe it was mean, maybe it was too much for such a little girl…I don’t know.

I said, “Ok Mikayla, I’ll give you $5. Or, if you tell them you don’t want the prizes and want to donate them back to the program, I’ll give you $20.”

This put her poor little head into a spin. You see, my $5 put her over the limit for the next prize group, which she was hoping to get. Yet, if she gave up her prizes, the Hart Association gets more money.

What was her reaction? She struggled hard with this one. She cried, she got mad, she tried to talk me out of it. At this point, I didn’t know where to go with it. Do I back down and just do the $20? I don’t know what the best thing would be, but I said, “It’s ok, Mikayla, just take the $5 if you don’t want to do it. You have still raised a lot of money for them.”

She couldn’t let it rest. In the morning before school she asked me for a $20 donation and said she didn’t need the dumb prizes anyways. She told her teacher she didn’t want the prizes and sent off her donation. What a little sweetie pie. She’s a smart little girl and quite a deep thinker for an 8 year old.

As a follow-up, her teacher said it wasn’t possible to tell them not to send the prizes. They will be sending her the prizes. Mikayla came up with the idea of donating them to the homeless shelter that Kim volunteers at once a week.

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