Pay Kindness Forward.
Sometimes in life, we are running so fast to survive, we stop seeing the people around us, for what they truly are . . . other human beings in need of love. We just see them as the guy that gives me coffee, the waitress serving my table, the woman at the bank. We dehumanize everyone around us. We make excuses in our heads for why we didn't pause the three seconds it would have taken to hold the door for the next person coming, because we are in a hurry.
Excuses why we honk, why we are late, why we don't tip at the coffee store, why we don't hold the door. So many excuses. But if you take the time to stop and look at each face you pass. Each story behind their eyes, you'd see the world anew.
As I've shared before, my mom is gone. So when her dad passed away, I had to stand in her place to help my aunt with the estate. Separating all the trinkets of life. Helping her cope with the loss, with the struggle of estate stuff, being there to support her, when my mom couldn't. I knew she would want me to be there, to hug her, to help her and to get hugs from her, because lets face it, I need them too.
I'm starved for hugs. My mom hugged a lot.
After a grueling, long and emotional day it was 7:30pm and we hadn't had supper yet, but the estate had been assessed and packed. The best restaurant in this particular small town closed at 8pm. So we rushed like mad into town in hopes for a bite to eat. We walked in the door at 7:45pm. Naturally the cooks and waitstaff all kinda gave us the stink eye. I grew up in a restaurant, I know the annoyance of someone coming in right at the end of the shift, but luckily they decided to serve us anyways.
Our waitress, very much pregnant, she must be about eight months, still remained kind and calm. She even made my aunt a cup of soup when it had already been put away. She was gracious, when she had every reason not to be. We ate quickly, knowing we had outstayed our welcome. We were so thankful after all the emotional distress of the day to just eat and be cared for. She must have seen the look in our eyes that day, our desperate need to be cared for, because she did it.
The ticket came for the five of us, only $45. We are in a small town after all. I snatched it from my aunt and went up to the counter to pay. I tipped my waitress $100, because I too, saw her. She was kind, graceful, eight-months pregnant, and about to not be able to work for a while. She needed this money, she needed my kindness. I didn't really have $100 to spare, but it didn't matter. That girl mattered. I could feel it in my heart. So I did it.
She cried and said, "I can't take that."
And I smiled and hugged her and said, "thank you for taking care of us."
All it takes is a tiny bit of kindness to change the world.