My mother was shocked, heartbroken and disappointed – as well as conflicted. She was dismayed and hurt to find out that her sweet innocent little boy was stealing from her. The disappointment in her voice, in her face – “How could you do this?” I did not feel guilt, I felt hurt. I saw the how I had hurt her and it pain me to have let her down. However, there was also this conflicted sense about her – she wanted to punish me, to reprimand me but there was more to this than I was not aware of. You see she had mixed feelings because she was angry yet grateful.
How could you steal from me? I taught you better! Where did I go wrong? Is how she felt and what she said. However, what I did not know was the struggle my mom was facing. She had exhausted all her resources, all her avenues. My mother had no money, no credit, none of the local “bodega’s” (corner shops) would allow her to purchase food on store credit (if you are poor and live in the city you are familiar with “in store credit”). She was at her wits end and was just about ready to give up.
She was conflicted because though it was wrong her little boy to steal money from her. It was wrong to steal period. Yet somehow, she was dealing with feeling happy and relieved. She was happy because she could now purchase food for her children. Relieved that she can now supply the necessities of life – this gave her hope. She had mixed feelings, she wanted to be angry but the coins her little boy stole from her relieved her of her stress. Angry I stole money from her purse but happy she could now feed her children.
In the end, my mother grounded me for two weeks. No T.V., no games, no fun – I was confined to my room. Expected to reflect upon the errors of my ways. This in turn left me conflicted. I learned that it was I, my coins – even though stolen from my mother. My coins had saved the day. The security I had placed in my coins had paid off. That my actions – stealing, in fact turned out to be the best thing I had ever done in my young life.
Is Stealing Good
My collection of stolen coins were worth about forty-five dollars. My mother used these stolen coins to purchase enough food to hold us up (to eat) until our government funds came in. It allowed my mom to breath, it gave her space, and room to hold on. It may have even possibly saved my mother from doing something she would have regretted. For what mother would not do the impossible and unthinkable to protect her children. So how is it possible that I did something wrong?
Is stealing good?
No – stealing is not good.
“What? But your whole story is about how stealing was a good thing?” Is what you are probably thinking.
I in no way, shape or form, do I advocate for stealing. Stealing is wrong. When I say stealing is good – I mean that you should steal from yourself.
Are you confused? It’s OK. Let me explain.
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