As I mentioned in my first insomniac post, last December 3 I broke my foot. It was just a couple weeks before my 33rd birthday. My birthday celebration was at our local watering hole and my insides were warm with Percocet and red wine. It was a short lived event because the thought of putting my pretty pink cast on the public bathroom floor gave me the heeby jeebies. Mama could handle drugs and juice but throw in balance issues and forget about it!
A lot of our friends that came to my party didn't know about my broken foot. I'm not on Facebook and didn't think to send an email. What for? To make people feel obligated to reach out? What if no one cared or responded?
One of our friends, who ironically presented me with a pedicure gift certificate, seemed genuinely confused that we wouldn't reach out to her or her husband, who my husband has been close friends with for decades. I wrote it off as "I could have told you to let me know if you needed anything" sentiment.
Looking back, I'm glad we didn't tell her about my brokenness because I learned just how special and kind this particular duo is. A few days after my party they delivered Christmas gifts for the boys and a handcooked dinner. Not just dinner, but they purposefully brought enough for a couple left over meals. After they prepared the plates for us, they kept saying to 'simply ask if we needed anything' during the recovery to *literally* get back on my feet again.
It wasn't until I got a phone call from this girl that it all clicked. 'I'm at Safeway by your house. Do you need anything? I can leave it in front of your house if R isn't home. That way you can get it the next time you go to the bathroom.' Bam! A real, life altering, act of kindness. After a long day of work, she was getting groceries for her, her husband, and her 2 year old son and thought about how my family and I were doing. She knew the house, and my spirits, were probably wrecked so she gave me the out to just leave it at the door.
She didn't post it on Facebook. She didn't ask her husband to text me. She offered something helpful that could be delivered immediately that only her and I would know about. In August I told her that offer was the nicest thing anyone has done for me. She looked at me like I was crazy. The statement does sound crazy, especially since I couldn't verbalize at that time what I meant. I hope this gives her a better understanding.
I was raised to believe that people only do things for others to get something in return. And, more sobering, you can't rely on anyone but yourself because others are only concerned about themselves. I have been retraining myself, thanks to examples from all of the many beautiful people in our lives, to believe that there is good and there are genuine caring people out there that want to help.
I now fully grasp the importance of one small act of kindness and intend to pay it forward til the day I die. Dramatic, but true. My birthday wish (you only jinx it if you say it while blowing out the candles, right?) is that everyone do something kind today. If you are like my girl and normally do really kind things all the time, I hope you give someone else their Aha moment today. That's 2 wishes...say something!