The Treasure

The Treasure

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Be The Best You Can Be

The Treasure

Forgiveness is a funny thing. It warms the heart and cools the sting.

~William Arthur Ward

At six years old, I dreamed of becoming an artist. My mom knew this, and so she gave the perfect gift to a first-grade artist like me. My friends and I called them “Stampy Markers.” They quickly became my treasure.

Unfortunately, my little sister thought they were amazing, too. For three days in a row, she would ask to play with my markers. Finally, she stopped asking, and I was able to leave them out in my room when I went to school, certain that she understood they were off-limits to her.

The first day that I didn’t hide them, I got home from school and went upstairs to my room. Right away, I saw that my markers weren’t where I had left them. My rainbow-colored treasures were gone!

Suspecting that my sister might have something to do with their disappearance, I searched the house for her. I found her in the basement and, sure enough, she was working on some rainbow drawing with my markers surrounding her.

I started yelling at her and grabbed the markers — at least the ones I could reach — and ran back up to my room, slamming the door behind me. I sat there for at least half an hour, but it seemed like much longer. Finally, I heard my sister’s footsteps coming up the stairs.

I opened my mouth, about to demand that she give the rest of my markers back, when I noticed a folded piece of paper being pushed underneath the door.

Once it reached my side of the door, I picked it up. As I read the words written on the cover, my anger quickly fell away, and tears began to well up in my eyes. Then they began running down my cheeks. On the front of the paper in rainbow colors were the words “Best Sister.” Inside was a picture she had drawn of herself offering me a late birthday gift.

How could I continue to be selfish and angry at her? How could I blame her for wanting to play with my markers? They were practically irresistible. And the fact that she used them to make something special for me made me realize that the greatest gift and treasure of all is the love you have for your family — and the love they have for you.

I opened the door, reached out to her, gave her a hug, and told her I forgave her.

As for the markers, they ended up running out of color or got lost; I’m not sure which. After all that happened, it didn’t really matter. What matters is that I still have the best sister and the greatest treasure. After all, only love lasts forever, and that’s the only treasure that everyone can share.

~Charlotte Uteg

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