Friday, October 18, 2013

To Be Randomly Kind

I feel so overwhelmed with emotions!  I don't know if it is the hormones that come from being very near my due date, or if it is lack of sleep, or if it is being on edge from my (hopefully) last semester of grad school, but everything makes me cry.  Everything.  And lately so many good and touching things have happened that I feel like losing it at any given second.

First of all, I want to thank each one of you who did a random act of kindness to honor my sister.  My heart feels so full when I think about how you guys were willing to take time out of your day and do that.

I recently read a story about a man who paid a bill for customers that were having a hard time at a diner he was in.  I have had that happen to me.  In fact, I have been the recipient of several RAKs that I would love to share with you here.  This one first.

My First Experience of a Random Act of Kindness

After my sister died, I was a little lost.  I hadn't realized until she was gone how much I depended on her.  She was my best friend and I hadn't even known it.  My family and I were all a little lost.  With Kristi gone, my closest sister became Emily.  It wasn't that I was trying to replace Kristi, or anything, but I saw the importance of establishing something with Emily.  Honestly, the older 3 kids never really got along with Emily.  She was treated like a baby, we thought, and always got out of things.  You know, typical annoying little sister.  She was younger and I just couldn't relate to her.

After Kristi died, I felt like Em and I should probably get to know each other.  I knew she was having a hard time and wanted her to know she could come to me.  I took her out to a pizza place for lunch.  It was so awkward.  We sat at the booth and just kind of stared at each other like, "now what?"  At one point we both got a little weepy because the awkwardness was magnified as we realized that Kristi would have known what to say.  We mostly ate in silence.

We ate our meal and when it was time to leave, our sweet server told us that our bill was on him.  He said that he tried to do a random act of kindness every day and today he was going to pay for our meal.  It had been a really hard time, but the sweet server (a man I will always remember) gave us more than just free food.  He gave Emily and I something to talk about on the way home.  He gave us a starting point.  That was worth so much more than anything I could have been given at that time.  I don't think he knows what a huge impact that gesture made on Em and me.

(It should be noted that Em and I are best friends now.  It may have happened without pizza, but it wouldn't have happened without a starting point--something positive to talk about.)

I have many more experiences that I will share with you.  Each one is so close to my heart I just don't want to lump them all together.  For now I just want to thank each and every one of you for the kindness you show others.  They appreciate it.  They remember it.  It changes them.  You are awesome.