The Kindness of a Stranger

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I flew back home today after a wonderful visit with family. It was a hectic ride to the airport. What seemed like leaving in plenty of time turned into a panic of whether we would make our flight at all. It was pouring, rush hour, accidents and bumper to bumper traffic every way we turned. We arrived at the airport at 9:05 and boarding started at 9:25. I was frazzled and frustrated and didn’t even say goodbye to my mom as I ran from the car.

Every now and then I am fortunate to run into just the right person at  just the right time. One of the curbside workers saw my craziness and immediately grabbed my bags and took me to a closed check in station. He grabbed my license and credit card and before I knew it, I was feeling much calmer as he handed me our tickets and pointed me in the right direction. Newark airport can be a real challenge, especially when it comes to getting through long lines of security. Fortunately for me, this was not the case today. We were standing at our gate at 9:20 with five minutes to spare. Sure I paid that man who helped me out today but I can’t help but wonder if he realized how positively he impacted my day. I am so grateful to him and happy to be home in my warm bed. 

Be kind to everyone you meet. More than ever, people need your kindness. Be aware of the major difference you can make in one precious life. I hope that man knows how much his help and kindness meant to me today. 

Be The Difference

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I made a quick trip to the mall today. As I was standing in line at Old Navy, I noticed a young girl behind me talking to her son. I’m guessing he was around four and his mother was quietly urging him to behave. He started touching my purse and playfully punching his mom and the more he acted out, the more she pleaded with him to stop. I could tell by her posture that she was embarrassed and I couldn’t help but reach out to her. We spend so much time trying to conform to the way others think we should be. We get caught up in comparing ourselves to other parents and measuring our own kids against someone else’s. I smiled at her and explained how I remember those days shopping with small kids like it was yesterday. We exchanged stories and before long she was smiling back at me through grateful eyes. Life isn’t perfect and we aren’t perfect either. People need our empathy and not our criticism.People need our support, not our judgement. She decided to walk  with me for a short time so we could continue talking. She needed someone to take her by the hand and say it’s going to be okay. Those words of encouragement made a tremendous difference in her day and as we finally parted ways, she turned and looked me in the eyes and said, thank you for being so understanding. I smiled back and told her to have a nice day. 

There are days I feel her pain. Days I can’t help but ask myself, where have I gone wrong? Those are the times my heart really hurts and the more critical I am, the sadder I feel. We are hard enough on ourselves without friends, family and strangers chiming in to make us feel worse. Think of this story the next time you feel the urge to pass judgement. Offer support instead and notice the significant difference you make in somebody’s day. Be the difference you want to see in the world. Be kinder, be compassionate and always jump in to provide some support. One person can make a tremendous difference. What kind of difference are you willing to make?

You Can’t Always Get What You Want

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Tonight, a very important lesson was reinforced for me. I can’t always get what I want. That’s just the way it is. Sometimes getting what I want is dependent on someone giving me what I want and let’s face it, people can be pretty difficult sometimes. We went for pizza tonight and three out of four of us eat pepperoni so we ordered a pizza 3/4 pepperoni. The pizza man refused our request and made us choose between half and half or putting pepperoni on the whole thing. He did not go to the school that teaches the job is to make the customer happy. So what did we do? We picked the pepperoni off of my sons two pieces. Some things will never make sense but in the end, everyone was happy. Lesson: give people what they want if you can. If the power is in your hands, perform some magic.

My Heart Is Full

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I had such a great evening. I am so darn serious sometimes. Last night, I spent some time with Mr. Silly. I must remember how blessed I am to have a son who is so light hearted and full of life. He is a reminder that the happiest people of all are the ones who are more silly and less somber. He is a free spirit with clever wit and has a laugh that makes my heart sing. He is so curious and genuinely compassionate. He is a mixture of red bull and pop rocks, just exploding with excitement to live his life. His excitement toward learning is exhausting and contagious at the same time. He is a talker, a communicator and I love that he enjoys sharing with me as much as he does. He makes me laugh and he finds a way to pick me up when I have lost my way. I am so blessed for the amazing life I have. He is a reminder to not take everything to heart. He is an example of freedom and happiness and his spirit is surrounded by the most beautiful light. He is funny by nature and kind to the core. He is a ray of sunshine on a dreary day. He is my sparkle on the dullest day. 

I am so grateful for so many amazing things in my life. My heart is so full. What are you grateful for today?

Kindness is Contagious

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Here’s a short, funny story filled with inspiration. I am following the daily email version of A Course in Miracles. Yesterday, I was sent a meditation titled, You can manifest anything, even a cup of coffee. Okay, I’ll listen and keep and open mind. And so I did. This morning I sent my daughter to Starbucks to get us some coffee. She just sent me this text and I am sitting here chuckling to myself in disbelief.  There is nothing like a random act of kindness to brighten someone’s day. Coincidence? You decide.

  

Be The One

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Look around you. People are consumed with stress and their own thoughts. We all carry so much around with us wherever we go. Even the people who give the appearance on the outside that life is wonderful, carry the same worries as anyone else. It is in our nature to over think and expect more from ourselves that we could ever deliver. Give yourself a break. Take a step back and look at who you are and how much you really do. I don’t mean observe how many things you cross off your to do list but how many things you do that really matter. We do so much for people all the time and sometimes we don’t even pause long enough to notice. Thank someone who had made a difference to you Tell them how much you appreciate them and learn to appreciate yourself too. Be the reason someone smiles today and be that reason for yourself too.

Just the other day I received the sweetest message. A friend of mine sent me a message letting me know how grateful she was that God brought me into her life. Seriously, it made my day. I was beaming from ear to ear. We need to hear more of these kind of things. We are quick to tell people how they disappoint us, but how often do we let them know how much we appreciate that they are part of our lives? I challenge you to let someone know today. Be a positive voice to someone today and work on being a more positive voice for yourself as well. Practice makes perfect and one day it will become second nature.