Yesterday I was leaving the grocery store, loading up my car with my newly purchased groceries when a woman walked up to me and asked,
"It's so hot outside. Would you mind giving me a ride home?"
I had a fleeting thought of fear and concern. But instead I just let myself feel love rather than fear in that moment.
I took a breath and smiled, turned to the woman, and said "sure."
I gave her a ride and we had a delightful conversation on the way to her house. When we exchanged goodbyes, I told her my name and she told me hers.
It was Grace.
Today I was at the regional non-profit blood center donating Source Plasma. My seat mate Tony was a lovely gentleman there for his 15 gallon milestone. Rather than hold a 65th birthday party he has invited his extended family to donate blood and blood based products including platelets, plasma, bone marrow, and source plasma in his honor. Over the course of this his "birthday week" 35 of his closest buds will be sharing the Gift of Life. What a life-changing birthday gift these people are giving! I signed my hubby up for an honorary Platelets donation on Tuesday, his first one, in Tony's honor. Every donation helps . In so many ways, these acts of kindness work to pay life forward for those in crisis. What would happen if we all did something similar? ... Read Full Story >>
My little harp and I went back to the Memory Care home yesterday. I hadn't been in a couple weeks as I was feeling tired and adrift -- no feedback from Hospice and not sure how much the patients noticed. The volunteer coordinator called me last week and asked, well, when are you going there again? I replied that I was uncertain if anyone noticed or cared and that I felt very alone in my endeavor. I hadn't heard from Hospice in a couple of months. He became quiet and said, that was his fault. He told me that while the people there may not show response, the staff reports the residents sleep better and are calmer. Two of the men patients had passed, but my three gals were there and wheeled out to sit in a semi-circle while I played. One was asleep, another in some quiet place, but she did ... Read Full Story >>
We became both recipient and also giver earlier today. A beautiful bouquet of calla lilies was shared with my hubby and I as we were on a walkabout in San Francisco. The giver was a gardener who was consciously gifting his beautiful blooms today in honor of what would have been his late wife's 75th birthday. "Para ti mis nuevos amigos. Please share these humble flowers, my wife's favorites in honor of her, in celebration of you, both named Lily. Love to share" As I took the flowers he kissed my cheek, pulling my husband in for a hearty embrace, bending oh so gently over to pet our small fluffy dog. " From me to you, mi familia es muy especial" After another sweet embrace we strolled past his neighborhood and went into Golden Gate Park. Sitting alone on a park bench was a blanket draped, weathered, and fragile appearing woman-child with her belongings in a ... Read Full Story >>
My elderly neighbor is in Las Vegas! I'm picking up her newspapers and mail for her. I noticed that Japanese Knot Weed had shown its leaves, so I went over with herbicide.
Later, another neighbor was in her garden cutting back some things that will become overgrown if not pruned. Our elderly neighbor keeps saying that she will do these things, but we know that it's gotten beyond her abilities. It also becomes a safety issue.
As she would prefer that we didn't do it, we wait until she's away. We call it sneaky kindness.
Today I was planning on anonymously leaving flowers on car windshields. I love doing this with daffodils this time of year. So I bought a few bunches.
During check-out at the store, they were short on baggers, so I bagged my own groceries and didn't pay attention to the prices scanned. The woman behind me did, though.
When I was heading out, she told me how great of a shopper I was and that I saved a lot of money. She was impressed. I thought that was nice of her to say, so I gave her one of my daffodil bunches and told her I'm putting them on windshields today as an act of kindness. She told me she was going to pay it forward because of this.
Turns out, we were parked right next to each other, which means there was a good chance she would have gotten the flowers anyway. I still was able to do the windshield act, as well.
There are days...and then there are days! My wife and I went to this vegan restaurant to give it a try. As we're eating our pepper and salt tofu, a young lady (Debra) walks in. She isn't aware that the place is vegan. Turns out, Debra's looking for some meat. My wife and I talk up the place and invite her over to try some of our tofu. Debra tried it and enjoyed it. She was going to go out and talk with her mother, so we offered her some tofu to bring to her mom. A few minutes later they both walk back in. We had the rest of our meal by this time, so I brought over a sampling of what we had ordered. Debra then asked the waitress to just duplicate our order for them. Next, Debra says, "and we want to pay for their meal", pointing to my ... Read Full Story >>
All of the employees in my company helped to raise money for a girl who worked as a front office associate in a competing company. .A few weeks ago she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. She is from an economically weaker family; she lost her father while she was studying in 6th Std; she is the single parent of a 3-year-old daughter and there is no one to look after her kid. Being the sole bread-earner, it is very difficult for her family to handle the expenses of her treatment. Her monthly income only amounts up to INR.12000.($200) and her treatment cost is approximately INR.10, 00,000 ($ 16000). When we came to know of her diagnosis, we wanted to help our fellow hotelier, so we took this to the top level management and to our HR Department and we decided to contribute from all the employee’s salaries. The employees from her company ... Read Full Story >>
Last year my class focused a lot on Kindness
Today two of those students brought me a gift. I had a squishy, stress reliving, toy brain that got damaged last year and had to be discarded.
These two former students of mine went on a field trip to a local college and walked by a table about mental health and were given one of the brains.
Immediately they thought of me and replaced mine from last year.
Truly a RAOK! :)
Friday we were out at a local restaurant and I asked my partner to pick a table that we would then get the bill for. He picked the same table that I had secretly chosen. It was a man, woman and child. We thought, "lets get their bill...anonymously of course!" So we worked it out with the waitress and I asked her to give them a Smile Card in place of their bill, which, along with tip came to about $46. I also won on a Quick Draw lottery ticket. Guess how much I won. Yup...$46.00. ... Read Full Story >>
A few years ago while working as an engineer we had foreign experts come to work on construction crews.. One of the workers was really nice and really reminded me of my grandpa. He told me that before he left, he wanted my watch.
I smiled thinking that he was kidding, but just before he left the country I gave him my watch. Another guy I was friendly with eyed my other watch before leaving and I was thinking to myself that I wouldl not give him the watch because I already gave my other watch.
But just as he was leaving, I took off my other watch and gave it to him. I was without a watch but when I got home I remembered that my dad had offered me a watch that I told him that I didn't need at the time, so I ended up asking him for it. I think as we give more we end up receiving even more.
❤️ A friend admired a beautiful Tibetan medicine bracelet I was wearing & I took it right off my wrist & gave it her, saying "here, it's yours now." I felt she could use the good energy it holds, where she's at on her journey now, and told her to feel my love when she wears it. I always felt good wearing it.
It brought me such joy that I could do this, as I really love that bracelet and it was given to me by a dear KS sister-friend and, in the past, I might have had to think about it, but this time it was an automatic, no-hesitate act......thanks to my time here at KS & all of you. Grateful for the transformation our time here, sharing with one another, enables in us. ❤️
I took a short flight the other day and we were offered an in flight snack. A sandwich. Which I took knowing full well I wouldn't eat it (it contained dairy and meat). I took it with the intention that later that day I may come across a homeless person, who for them, this sandwich may be their only meal.
Well I did come across a homeless man later that day. This man and his dog Bella. Check out his smile as he's opening the sandwich. He shared half with Bella.
Seeing how hungry he was, I emptied my bag of all treats and food I had. I also went and purchased him a large coffee.
Kindness is such a simple thing for us to do, yet for the recipient, it can be life changing. ♥
About 10 days ago, I was given a $10 gift card for Dunkin Donuts from a co-worker. This was an attempt from that co-worker to make amends for a problem we encountered. It was a thoughtful and well appreciated gift. However, I use the Dunkin Donuts app on my phone for my regular Dunkin's run and already had $30 plus dollars loaded onto my account. I decided to hold the $10 gift card for such an opportune time. Fast forward, I didn't know who to give the $10 gift card to - until this morning. We have a new worker who started on Monday who relocated from out of town. On the outside, he appears to have everything together, but I have reason to believe that his funds are extremely low (something I saw this morning). So I have hidden the $10 gift card (along with a Smile Card from KindSpring) ... Read Full Story >>
Recently, while I was walking home from work, I noticed two small girls walking ahead of me, about 100 meters, or so. One was tending to the smaller of the two, attempting to help her walk. They obviously needed help.
So, I hurried my pace and caught up to them, where I noticed the smaller girl had cut her foot, and her older sister was starting to get tired.
I asked them what had happened, she said she fell at the park, cut her foot and got laughed at by the other kids. Luckily I had some bandaids with me and water, so I rinsed off her foot, and bandaged it.I picked her up, gave her a hug and told her that I was going to carry her home.
Her mom thanked me endlessly as she had been looking for them, when we got to their house.She tried to pay me but I told her no reward was required.
It was driven home, to both my husband & myself, that we really never know how our small acts of kindness may impact someone.
We were at a Wake yesterday, for an acquaintance we knew from our local park. My husband used to walk around the park with him & they would talk on the phone once in a while. When we went up to his wife to share our condolences & introduced ourselves to her as her husband's park friends, what she said to my husband amazed us.
She said her husband always spoke about Harvey (my hubby) with great fondness & had a picture with an inspiring quote on it that Harv had given him on their fridge & wouldn't let anyone remove it. And that he was always sharing things Harv had said with them. We were blown away, as we had no clue about any of this. I almost cried & I could see Harv was visibly moved too.
So, never doubt the power of your "small" acts of kindness, because they can have a HUGE effect on people.
I saw a man who I thought might be struggling in the McDonald's parking lot. I got out of my car and asked if I could buy him a burger and fries.
He was stunned at first and said nothing. He shook his head as if he were dreaming and said, "Sure." I asked if he wanted a drink as well. He didn't say anything. I asked again, and he asked for a milk.
When I told him I'd be right back he started to smile. When I returned with his bag of food, he was delighted and said, "You are a walking miracle." (I've never been called a miracle before).
I fist bumped him and said I'd see him around.
In my library (where I work), I've (anonymously) started a thing called "be the good fairy." When you notice someone is down, or having a stressful day, or sometimes for no reason at all, you perform a random act of kindness and leave a note signed "-- The Good Fairy."
My first "Good Fairy" moment was buying a vase of flowers for a coworker who is very stressed after her husband was laid off (we're a small public library, so we don't make too much -- now she has to support them both). I left her the vase and a cheerful card when no one was looking, saying "Just a little something to brighten your day! -- The Good Fairy."
So far, I'm the only one in on the game - but I'm really hoping it takes off. I hope some of you may be inspired to incorporate this into your lives, too, because it is so rewarding!
A funny story happened last week in Brazil. After delivering a program there my wife and I were catching the plane back to our home in Portugal. We entered the airport, passed security and reached boarding zone... and then discovered that the flight had been canceled. After 30 minutes calling the airline they told us that the only flight back would be today, (four days after the original flight). I felt my stomach tightening, my hands sweating, and my thoughts rushing about our cats, all the professional commitments I had already scheduled in Portugal, etc. I decided to take a breath, and as we were speaking with a security officer to get more information, I decided, that instead of panicking, to act with kindness and to ask about his story. The security officer's name was Raul, he wasn't happy in this job and in his country and his dream was to become a ... Read Full Story >>
I stopped at IHOP for a very late dinner after work and 15-20 kids came in dressed for prom. They were getting a bite between the prom and the after party. I paid their bill and that of the adults driving/chaperoning them. IHOP was a totally last minute choice, but my server was the same one I had when I did this for another group last year. Since I'm not a regular at this restaurant (2-3 times a year), he thought I planned to be there on these nights.