This I Believe

John - matawan, New Jersey
Entered on December 11, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
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Half a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, fruit snacks, a pouch of tropical punch Capri Sun and carrot sticks still remains my favorite bagged lunch. It wasn’t until third grade that I became a fan of peanut butter and jelly. I use to prefer the overstuffed turkey and pepperoni sandwiches with a bag of Doritos that my mom packed for me but that would all change the day I left my lunch on the school bus.

Lunch was always my favorite part of the day in elementary school; I was a growing boy and needed my nourishment. I remember in second grade, Mrs. Hessick, my teacher, would always teach us spelling before lunch time. I could never pay attention to what she was saying, “I before e except after c” is the only thing I can remember. I guess that’s why I always have to spell check everything I write today, but during spelling class all I could pay attention to was the grumbles coming from my stomach. Eventually Mrs. Hessick’s rambles would stop, and I would be the first one to jump out of my seat, run to my cubby, grab my lunch and “walk” down the seemingly never ending hallway to the lunch room.

It was a Friday and finally the spelling lesson was over. I jumped out of my seat, ran to my cubby and starred in horror to find my lunch was not there. I panicked, the grumbles coming from my stomach were louder then ever, and I didn’t have a lunch to quiet them. I looked around the room to see if anyone had stolen my bagged lunch and as I was about to accuse Tommy-the hearty eater, I realized I left my lunch on the bus. I sadly made my way to the lunch room. As I sat at the table looking down at the bare table in front of me, the boy sitting next to me slid half a peanut butter and jelly sandwich my way, fruit snacks, a pouch of tropical punch Capri sun and carrot sticks. A boy that I wasn’t even friends with was sharing his lunch with me. From this day on that became my favorite bagged lunch, and more importantly I learned the meaning of kindness.

I believe in kindness. The kindness to me was when a boy, that wasn’t friends with me, was willing to sacrifice half of his lunch so I wouldn’t starve. To me kindness comes in many forms whether it is a small act such as helping your little sister learn to tie her shoes or something as big as picking the smelly kid first to be on your kickball team. Kindness is a virtue that everyone should possess and pass on to others, so next time you’re packing your lunch don’t forget to throw in an extra snack for a friend or possibly the forgetfully kid that left their lunch on the bus.