239. “It’s Mine!” by Leo Lionni


“It’s mine!” If you are a parent, you are bound to hear this phrase coming out from your sweetly babbling baby’s mouth. Interestingly, children master “mine” even before they learn to use the super simple pronoun “I”. Luckily, there is no need to panic and question our parenting techniques. We are not raising a selfish child. It is just  the “independence” phase. Sooner or later,  children learn to share. Uff.  Or not.

Milton, Rupert and Lydia were three quarrelsome frogs that lived together on an island. They bickered about everything: Milton claimed that he owned the water, the earth was Rupert’s property and Lydia liked to believe she could have the air for herself. Until an old toad couldn’t take it anymore and gave the selfish frogs a talking to. It didn’t stopped the frogs from bickering, though. A storm did. As the frogs had nowhere to hide from the terrifying thunders, but for a little rock, they discovered that “they felt better now that they were together, sharing the same fears and hopes.”

In other words, for some people “It’s mine!” is not just a phase. They are a Scrooge for a living.  But even those people change their minds eventually. They just need something mega-terrible to happen first. Where is the logic here? Go figure.

Another wise and relevant story by this master of story-telling.

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