Paying it Forward 27+ Times
After the Sandy Hook tragedy I have been at a loss for words and have had a feeling of hopelessness on how to deal with the challenges of guns and mental health in our society.
I posted a comment on my personal Facebook page about mental health care and the comment stream seemed to turn in to a pro or against discussion about guns. I guess talking about the issues is the first step but listening should be a close second. I often find with controversial issues like gun control, my marriage, and other sensitive topics: people do not listen. People preach, people stand by their beliefs and people are not open to really seeing both sides. I include myself when I say people. For instance, when we talk about gay marriage I have a really, really hard time listening to people who say “hate the sin, love the sinner”. Hearing that someone considers my whole relationship a sin and hates it, well that pisses me off and I have a very hard time listening to what they have to say.
Regardless of how you feel about gun laws I do believe we need to discuss how to handle mental illness in our society. I personally don’t think we are handling it very well. But me sharing my opinion is also not doing anything to improve the situation.
In the meantime, while we are all at a loss of what to do I am thankful for NBC News Anchor Ann Curry who tweeted the idea to do 20 acts of kindness (using the pay it forward method) to honor the 20 children lost on December 14, 2012. The movement evolved in to 26 acts of kindness to also honor the teachers but I personally am calling it 27 acts of kindness. 27 lives were taken that day, actually 28…
Imagine how far reaching one small act of kindness could go.
For awhile I have been inspired by the Facebook page: Paying It Forward – One Day at a Time “This page is to provide a place where everyone can share stories, testimonials, offer encouragement and be a positive influence to help everyone see that there is still good going on in the world and rekindle the spirit of giving!”
I am so happy to see this movement going viral online. Instead of debating how many acts of kindness, how about making it a way of life and going with Paying it Forward – One Day at a Time? I invite you to leave a comment below sharing ideas of small acts of kindness to help inspire others. Share what you have done, what someone has done for you or just an idea you have of what might be a nice thing to do.
Thank you Ann Curry and thank you to my friends who posted about their acts of kindness.
This is something we can all do. Kindness doesn’t have to cost money.
Oh, Yes We Can!
Not sure where to start check out: 134 Ideas for Random Acts of Kindness
Photo of Ann Curry © 2012 NBCNews.com
- Everybody Loves Ricky
- Time for a change
Random acts of kindness is something I try to live by. My name means love. I try to do something nice for someone every day, whether it’s letting them cut in front of me in line, helping an elderly or disabled person load their groceries, or just opening a door for someone. It costs nothing to be courteous and respectful. It’s the golden rule, treat others as you want to be treated. I personally have been doing this since I was a child. Sometimes I can do a bit more, other times I just do something that costs me nothing but a couple of minutes of my time. And by living this way, it’s teaching my children to be respectful and courteous. I’m even teaching my husband. About three years ago right after he re-enlisted in the army, he got a bonus. He was on R&R leave for a deployment in Iraq when he it was deposited in our account, and he was home for a few weeks of December, but not for Christmas. We decided to celebrate our Christmas early as the children wanted to spend it with Daddy. To do our Christmas shopping, we got a babysitter and went to walmart. We got our Children 3 gifts each, not a lot, but enough to make them happy. They understand that it’s not about what you get but what you give. They understand the reasoning behind it, though they were only toddlers then. As we were waiting in line to check out, the lady in front of us was unloading her cart FILLED with mostly clothes and a few toys. The lady and I got to talking about the holidays and how hard they are when you’re somehow attached to the military. My husband and I found out that not only was she a military wife, but she was a foster mother to 6 kids as well as having 4 children of her own. She explained that’s why all the clothes, because the foster kids came with basically nothing but the clothes on their backs. My husband did something then that endeared him to me forever. He walked around me and our cart, pulled out his wallet and handed her $200. Not enough to cover everything, but enough to help out a wonderful woman who had opened her heart and home to children who are less fortunate. She tried giving the money back, but my husband refused. He just told her that someone very near and dear to his heart had grown up with a terrible home life, had lived in poverty and filth, had been homeless and had still turned out to be an amazingly wonderful and caring person, had taught him that caring about our fellow beings, being compassionate, is the greatest medicine in the world, because it heals your heart, and the hearts of those around you. I’m generally not a person who brags or tells stories of my good deeds, but as this was something my husband did, I don’t feel like I’m bragging. I’m so proud of him, of him being able to learn the value of compassion. He grew up in a very selfish home, and even though we had spent the majority of his re-enlistment bonus on bills and paying of credit cards, he still gave ALL the cash he had in his wallet. It made my heart swell with pride and joy, and overwhelming love to know that this man is my husband. I know my lesson’s have stuck with my children, who are 5 and 7. This year they asked if they could have a hot cocoa and apple cider stand to earn money. With that money they wanted to buy gifts for children who wouldn’t get anything for Christmas. They are always asking if they can donate their toys and grown out of clothes. My husband still remembers how wonderful it felt to give that woman help and hope with no strings attached.
Charity – Thank you for sharing your beautiful story with us.