I’m not sure what kind of response this will yield, but I’m expanding my birthday tradition, started last year, to encompass not only doing random acts of kindness on my birthday but in the entire month leading up to it as well. It is not for self promotion or to shout, “Look at me, I’m nice!” I know who I am, and I do try and do acts of kindness every day. It’s just trying to be a decent human being and how I was raised and will continue to raise my family. This is more organic, giving back more than you expect back in return, doing good for the sake of doing good and to feel great about it.
I’m taking on this task to make myself and others take notice of how easy it is to become self-absorbed and centered solely on our own inner circles. I’m not going to be the most original with my tasks, and being a realtor and developing a business, I don’t have buckets of funding to throw around, and I wish I did! Wouldn't it be great to go up to someone and hand them $1,000, smile and walk away. This is not to say that what we are all going through everyday isn’t important, it is, very much. It’s just a chance to do something that I might not do on a regular basis to get someone else to take notice and maybe do the same too. Remember the old flick, Pay it Forward? Same principle just a smaller scale.
Complimenting someone’s jewelry, pushing carts back into the corral, letting someone in your lane when they realized they are going to miss their turn, listening to a cashier talk about a bad moment in their day, sharing dinner with a neighbor, walking trash cans up to the person's home where you wait for the bus stop, helping someone with their shoveling, all these acts are daily things that go on and they shouldn’t stop, just add and enhance them. Make someone smile from the unexpected; those are my intentions this coming month. I would love to hear suggestions and even about your Random Acts of Kindness.
My Day One started today, again the acts aren’t huge but they are heartfelt. Being that it was Valentine’s Day, I know not everyone is a big fan of the commercial holiday, people feel left out. So of course I was telling everyone in the stores and parking lots and everywhere happy Valentine’s Day with a goofy grin and a bounce in my step. Many were not going to a fancy dinner, had no significant other, no one that they could enjoy the holiday with. How about those that might not get a visitor, say in a nursing home?
Well, I found some super cute valentines with a nostalgic flair and suckers to attach for my act. Since the recipients wouldn’t meet me, I filled them out "From: Your Valentine" and, of course, the smiley face! I didn’t know who would receive them so they were addressed: "To: A wonderful person, a great person, fantastic …" You get the picture. I went to Frankfort Terrace, a nursing home that I never knew existed until last night. Walking up, I did feel my heart tighten, nervous. How would they take a stranger coming to drop off candy? Would I be turned away? Walking in, tense, I asked the woman at the counter if I could leave some valentines for residents that might not have a visitor. She called for assistance. A 20-something guy in a cap smirked at my request. I hope it was because it was genuine, not that he thought I was some elderly stalking weirdo! The lady in charge came to my aid and with a large smile, collected the cards and said the suckers were perfect. They would love candy. WONDERFUL! I felt and feel wonderful! I have gained a frequent crybaby card after the birth of my son, or probably sometime during pregnancy so as I walked back to my car, I cried. For the loss of my grandparents and for everyone there that might be missing someone also.
Day One I will say was a success. I look forward to challenging myself daily and to Acting Out.