Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Act Kind

One October afternoon during my first year as a School Counselor, I was feeling pretty dejected and disillusioned. You know that feeling, when real life is just not living up to the glittering expectations that you had hoped. My work was real and much more difficult than I had imagined.

And I had smiled all day on the ouside and fretted on the inside. And I just needed to talk to someone, so I went to our Gifted teacher, and I just spilled out all of my concerns. I am sure it was a mess of words, and confusion. She is much older than me, and full of quirks, but she listened to me like my problems were her problems. At the end she hugged me and reminded me to breathe and look at all of the things that I was actually doing that were being successful. I felt heard and appreciated and was able to go home and get ready for another day.

Well, that next morning when I opened my office door, there was a big handmade banner that said "Happy Fall! We love you", a Chik-Fil-A biscuit, and a card. I was so taken aback, who could have done such a kind thing for me? I smiled and I also cried because who knew that I was desperate for a kind deed. The card was so sweet and it was signed "Everybody" and of course I knew it had to be her. I rushed out in the hall and hunted her down and just gave her the biggest hug ever. How could I ever express that her kindness was like water to my emotional desert? How could I let her know that she disarmed my hysterics and self-pity, by being simply kind.

Today, I had lunch with this same teacher, as I prepare to say goodbye to life here in Athens. And we talked about so many things; growth, changes, family and the aging process. And as we said goodbye and hugged again, it was so easy to say "I love you!". And I made sure and took time and thanked her for her kindness that gave me renewal to press on at my work. And she tried to downplay it, but I said it again, that she would NEVER be able to know how her caring uplifted me. I let her know, that her one act has been multiplied SO many times over, as I have been kind to students and encouraged them to go be kind to others.

This life seems so complicated at times. Both rushing ahead and yet also dragging along. But, there are small things, that are like keys to a better way of living. Acting kind to others is one of those keys. Acting kind and expecting nothing in return. Acting kind at just the right moment, can change the day, week, month, or even the entire life of a person. That is something powerful right there! Do I have within me, the capability to made a positive and important impact on another person? Yes I do, and that is something to cherish.

In the midst of the hurry and busy and plans, I would ask you this. When is the last time you remember being kind on purpose? When is the last time someone shared with you, and you set your mind to helping them lift their burden? If not recently, then I hope that very soon you get a circumstance that crosses your particular path, that only your unique kindness can help. And a tip is also that if you are too plugged in to the TV, phone, tablet, wallet, etc. you might possibly just miss out on someone who needs you to be kind. They need it more than you even know, so listen carefully, and look closely, and then act wisely and lovingly and watch your little piece of this world change for the better.

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