It might be easy to grumble about “kids these days…” when interacting with obnoxious teenagers, but maybe some of them are more mature and kind-hearted than we give them credit for.
Jeanean Thomas was nervous about taking her daughter to a seemingly out-of-control skatepark for the girl’s first few scoots on a new skateboard. But when a teenage boy got involved, her daughter’s first skating experience ended up better than anyone could have ever imagined.
Here’s the text if you need it:
Dear teenage boy at skate park: You’re probably about 15 years old, so I don’t expect you to be very mature or for you to want a little girl on your skate ramp for that matter.
What you don’t know is that my daughter has been wanting to skateboard for months. I actually had to convince her that skateboarding wasn’t for just for boys.
So when we walked up to the skate park and saw that it was full of teenaged boys who were smoking and swearing, she immediately wanted to turn around and go home. I secretly wanted to go too because I didn’t want to have to put on my mom voice and exchange words with you.
I also didn’t want my daughter to feel like she had to be scared of anyone, or that she wasn’t entitled to that skate park just as much as you were.
So when she said, “Mom it’s full of older boys,” I calmly said, “So what, they don’t own the skate park.”
She proceeded to go down the ramp in spite of you and your friends flying past her and grinding rails beside her.
She only had two or three runs in before you approached her and said “Hey, excuse me …” I immediately prepared to deliver my “She’s allowed to use this park just as much as you guys” speech when I heard you say, “Your feet are wrong. Can I help you?”
You proceeded to spend almost an hour with my daughter showing her how to balance and steer, and she listened to you a feat not attained by most adults.
You held her hand and helped her get up when she fell down and I even heard you tell her to stay away from the rails so that she wouldn’t get hurt.
I want you to know that I am proud that you are part of my community, and I want to thank you for being kind to my daughter, even though your friends made fun of you for it.
She left the skate park with a sense of pride and with the confidence that she can do anything, because of you.
Jeanean originally posted her message on Twitter, which is where it went totally viral:
Dear teenage boy at the skate park… pic.twitter.com/78ry5esoTa
— Jeanean (@JeaneanThomas) October 11, 2015
The heartwarming note has been retweeted almost 30,000 times and has almost 40,000 favorites. The story has been picked up all over the web, and the local city government even tweeted about it!
— City of Cambridge (@cityofcambridge) October 22, 2015
ABC News has reported that the skatepark owner knows the boy, and has given the mother his contact information, but they have not connected as of yet.
Hopefully this is just the beginning for this young girl’s skating prowess, and fortunately she has an amazing role model in this extraordinary teenage boy!