I just found out that this past week has been Random Acts of Kindness Week. I just missed it! I think it’s wonderful to have an acknowledgement of such a wonderful idea.
I have been very lucky to be on the receiving end of many random acts of kindness in my life. There are two that really stand out for me and I think about them often. The first memory was when I was a new driver, and I was heading home along the 401. All of a sudden my steering wheel started to pull to one side and I heard a whomp whomp whomp sound. I struggled to pull to the side of the road safely. Once I did, I got out to look over the damage while another driver pulled in behind me and jumped out to help. He kindly asked if I knew how to change a tire and, of course, being a teenager I didn’t hesitate to say “yeah”. Then I sheepishly added that I had never actually done it before. He proceeded to help me find the jack and the spare, and helped me change the tire. He didn’t accept any money for helping. He said that he just saw that I needed help and wanted to make sure that I was OK.
Another time I was in a Loblaws parking lot on a windy day. As I got out of my car I was flipping through all my coupons, and suddenly a loose twenty dollar bill flew out of my purse. I tried to chase it, but as the wind caught it and took it high up I could see that there was no way I was going to reach it. I walked toward the store feeling frustrated because $20 is $20 after all. Just as I was crossing the parking lot to enter the grocery store a man pulled up and handed me my $20. The bill had flown toward his truck and he jumped out and grabbed it. I said that I felt like I should give him something to say Thank you, but he just waved me off and drove away. I’ve kept that twenty dollar bill all of these years to remind me that there are kind people out there.
We have kindness in us that comes out when we see someone in need and know that we can help. We need to stop to take a look around every once in a while instead of being always absorbed in our own worries. The hardest part for me is taking the action.
The good Samaritan who helped me with my tire could have just kept driving, telling himself that he had somewhere to be and that surely someone else will stop to help. The man who gave me my twenty dollars back could have just kept it for himself. No one was looking…or were they? Whether it is our belief in God or our own conscious that drives our actions, it is healthier for us to be kind.
I hope I have been able to repay even half of the kindness’ that have been bestowed upon me. Even though I missed Random Acts of Kindness week, I am making a decision to keep my head up and help no matter what time of year it is!