At the store is when the day stepped out of normal.
I was in the check-out line, and I noticed a gal in front of me. After she was done buying her groceries, she kept awkwardly loitering around and looking back. I wondered if she was waiting for something from the cashier, who appeared to be now working on my groceries.
The gal started toward me holding two credit/debit cards. She asked, "Can I show you a card trick?" At this point, I was on to her, but I complied. She held out her two cards and said "Pick one." I had my 3 year old select a card. He did so, and then she said, "I want you to use this to buy your groceries."
Flabbergasted, I said "No, you don't have to do that. We're okay."
She replied, "No, I want to. Someone did this for me 4 years ago (she began to tear up) and I have been waiting for a moment that I could do this for someone else."
I couldn't take that desire, and opportunity she sought to serve, away from her, so I told her thank you and hugged this woman--a complete stranger. It was slightly awkward to have someone standing there waiting to pay for your groceries. I offered her a piece of gum (how dumb, right?) and we each asked about the others' family. She has 4 young children, close in age to my 4 youngest. Her name is Ashley.
I reflected on this on the way home. I was a wee bit emotional myself (I don't usually get too emotional). Interesting how one simple act of kindness can change people, make a difference, and conjure more acts of kindness. It's like a domino effect--one thing set in motion is passed continuously down through more and more events set into motion.
Often, these acts are referred to as "random." Random acts of kindness.
But what if kindness was less random, more like just kindness? Just being kind to others. Kind to your family. Kind to strangers. Kind to neighbors. All the time. Really become man"kind," or human"kind." Maybe those names for people are a coincidence. Maybe they're not.
Go do some "Acts of kindness," or they can be random if you want. But, I think the more focused we are on just being kind, the less random it will be and the more kindness will become a way of life.
© Wendy 2013