Bam! Lessons from a child

Monday evening is the regular “library time” for a father and a small boy, and those two are the highlight of my week.

At the time of their visit to the library where I work, I am in the room that houses the book drop. I hear through the door the murmur of their voices and the scraping of a step-stool being pulled into position. The child’s feet climb up one step on the stool and then another as he prepares for his book return ritual.

“Thank you, book. Good-bye,” he says to the first book. He pushes it through the slot. “Bam!” he shouts.

He performs this small ceremony for every book. He returns 10 to 15 books, on average, so his process takes some time. If there are people waiting behind him, he doesn’t adjust his pace; he savours his moment.

I stop whatever I’m doing and savour his moment too. I smile widely.

This child shows me:

  1. He respects and cherishes books.
  2. He expresses gratitude.
  3. He knows how to “be here now.”
  4. He celebrates each moment with a Bam!

Some lessons for all of us, from a child.


The Three Questions by Jon J. Muth

One of my favourite books.


About Arlene Somerton Smith

Writer, laughing thinker, miner of inspirational insights, sports fan, and community volunteer

Posted on May 16, 2017, in Arlene Smith, Arlene Somerton Smith, Gratitude, Inspiration, Living life to the fullest, reading, spirituality. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. How sweet is that! He has been taught well to respect books.

  2. My new favourite post.

  3. Oh this was a treat to read and imagine! There is a young family living downstairs from us. They have three daughters under 5 — two are almost 2-year old twins. The parents are so patient and allowing with them. We have a very large fenced yard around our building and the girls frequently are out playing — even in the rain. They can take their clothes off, pick the flowers, play with the chickens, dig in the dirt, step in the creek” get totally muddy, drop their snacks for the dog, pet the dog — everything is safe and they can do as they please without censure. It reminds me of my own childhood — I had a 100 acre “playpen” with very few limitations (stay out of the cesspool and away from the wells) to my tromping rights. It’s an amazing way to grow up.
    Children naturally create and love rituals. The child with the book ritual at your library is no exception — he’s found a way to “let go” of each book “friend” and in the process show the ones behind him in line a way to honor the most everyday items in our lives with love. I hope those folks are paying attention to this important teaching. I know you are. With love, Alia

  4. Oh, I love this. Goosebumps. This child will grow up into a man who loves to read. And what a great dad. ❤️

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