The last two weeks have been a whirlwind with vacations and end-of-summer activities. Despite the craziness this time of year brings into my life (and the lives of others!) I’ve had an amazing opportunity to observe kindness in others:
- Two friends posted stories of kindness on their Facebook pages (Click here to read their status updates.) Amazing! Stories such as these make me wish I had an endless supply of money to surprise and bless others unexpectedly.
- While at the beauty salon, I looked out the window and observed an elderly gentleman opening the car door for his wife (in the rain, mind you).
- Standing in a very long restroom line at an amusement park, the person at the front of the line allowed a mom with a young child to go first instead of herself.
- People held doors open for those walking behind them (and helped parents, like me, trying to maneuver through an entry way with a child in a stroller.)
- People picked up trash on the ground and placed in trashcans.
- Several drivers showed patience and kindness by allowing others to get in front of them in the midst of two separate traffic jams.
- Coworkers offered to drive when going to the same location for lunch.
- Two people brought over fresh fruit and vegetables from their garden “just because”.
- Several friends sent emails, notes and messages just to let others know they were thinking of them.
Wow! What a blessed week indeed! There is SO MUCH kindness out there if we just take the time to SEE!
My favorite story of observing kindness in others happened between my two oldest children. It was the last “official” day of summer break (as I was returning to work the next day) and I offered to play board games with them in the afternoon when the youngest child was napping. “Today is YOUR day! You each get your very own “Mommy Time” this afternoon! Choose a board game, any game you want, and I will play with you!” Now, if you know our family, you know we have a TON of board games. Scrabble. Sorry. Clue. Monopoly. Triominoes. Mouse Trap. Checkers. Apples to Apples. You name it, we probably have it. In fact, we have SO many board games that we actually converted one of our coat closets into a game closet just to make the games more accessible to the children.
Having three children with ages ranging 2 to 13 makes playing games as a family a bit challenging. The older children LOVE having “Mommy Time” for game playing because all my attention is focused on them, and them alone. I knew my pronouncement of “Mommy Time Game Day” would garnish cheers and excitement from the children. As both children started thinking about which game they wanted to play, I reminded them that because it was THEIR time, they could choose to play a game with just me, or with me and their sibling (knowing, of course, that they would choose to play with just me because it was, after all, Mommy Time!)
So you can imagine my surprise (and delight!) when BOTH children chose their favorite game and said they wanted their sibling to play as well. What fun! We could all play together! We played three rounds of Twister and one (very long) game of Life.
No one was left out and our afternoon was filled with laughter and joy. Even when my daughter was crowned Life Millionaire, my son handled the disappointment with kindness by saying, “That’s OK. Maybe I’ll win next time.”
Kindness in others. It’s amazing how inspiring it can be. Just a little shift in perspective can make such a difference in your disposition. This week I have tried to focus my attention on the GOOD things people are doing and I have to say it has made me a happier gal indeed!
We all have choice. Free-will. We have a choice to focus on the negative or the positive. I challenge you this week to shift your perspective to the positive and share what you see! Kindness is contagious! 🙂