I don’t think I ever got their names.
It was early on a Saturday morning and my (then 5 year old) was fussing and wanted to come with me on my quick errand. Irritated, I put him in the car and off we went! It was raining, and the roads were slippery and in what seemed like a split second, my car skidded off the road and crashed into the center embankment! Scared and confused, all I could think of was “my child?” A vehicle stopped and a mother came out and asked if we were okay. She asked if she could take my child into her car so he could watch a movie with her kids in the car. I said Yes. Still stunned. They stayed with me until the cops came, made sure we were okay and until we got a ride home, they patiently waited while my son watched a movie with their two daughters in the back of their SUV. My car was totaled in that crash but we were okay. My then 5 year old son is now almost 18 years and though I never got their names, years later, I can and will always remember that couple who stopped to check, who sensed a mom’s deepest fear about her child and took the extra step of taking a child out of the scary situation into a safer one.
My kindness memoirs are reminders of interactions I have had with others who have shown me so much kindness that warm my heart and influenced my mindset and outlook to life for many years – Getting home to my apartment about 15 years ago to grocery dropped off by a friend who thought to surprise me and make me smile; the friend that prayed with me one day a week each week for months during a difficult period; friend that drove 3 hours after work just to spend a night talking with me and making sure I was okay; My sister who stood by me quietly reassuring me that she got me, times I was scared during an incredibly difficult divorce; friends that are ever ready to listen to my rant, feel with me and yet give me honest solid advice while holding me up ANY time I need them; the stranger that got me gas when I ran out of gas (yea I am that person that waited until the last minute to gas up lol); friend that sent me scented roses on valentines because she felt it would put a smile on this single mom’s face – I could go on and on, because I have been blessed with so much kindness that are too many to count.
Each of these interactions inspired, encouraged and remind me that I am not alone, that I am part of so many different tribes that I draw strength from but mostly, that regardless of the what we see in the news, that we are capable of so much kindness if we just open our hearts.
Think back to the different kindness encounters you have had and how they made you feel. Take a moment in your day, week, month to be intentionally kind to someone else, It doesn’t have to be a big gesture, it could be a thought, a smile, a small act, a prayer ….. you never know, you could reach that someone who may just be waiting for it to change their lives, their attitude and outlook – just like it did mine.