Thursday, March 11, 2010

Pay it Forward

Every time I begin to lose faith in humanity, someone does something to change my mind. Sometimes it's something as simple as holding the door open for me or lending me the penny I'm short at check-out. Sometimes, though, someone goes completely out of their way to do something nice, and I cannot help but smile.

This past Saturday I was at work, much like every other Saturday. This Saturday, though, I was a cashier rather than a CSS, so I naturally had more interaction with customers than normal. A woman came through my line to pay for her groceries and noted her Girl Scout cookies were already paid for. I smiled, and started a conversation with the woman. We discussed our favorite cookies, and I mentioned that mine hadn't come in yet, so I'd be sure to stop by on my way out to buy some from the girls selling them at the door. I finished ringing out and bagging her order. She paid, thanked me, and left. A few minutes later, I was bagging at the register next to me when I saw the woman again. She was coming toward me, with her carriage still full of groceries. I asked if she needed anything. She said, "No, no, but I was just on my way out and the girls were packing up their stuff..." to which I replied, "Aww, alright... next time, I guess," with a half-hearted smile. She cut off the end of my sentence by tossing something to me and saying, "but I got you your favorites. Enjoy!" I looked down at what I had caught - a box of thin mints! My favorite! I thanked her and tried to give her the money for them. She just smiled, told me not to worry about it, and left without another word.

It's so wonderful to know that there are still kind and unselfish people left in this world. It's a breath of fresh air when someone does something out of the kindness of their heart to completely change your day. Nothing could wipe the smile from my face that day. And since then, whenever someone does something that really gets on my nerves, I remember her: I remember her kindness and the way that she took the opportunity to change my day. I haven't seen her since Saturday, and I don't know if I ever will (though it's likely - it's a small town), but I hope that if I can't tell her how she alone changed my outlook on humanity that someone else will. It's this kind of person that the world needs.

Remember to pay it forward. When someone does a random act of kindness for you, I hope that you pass it on and do the same for someone else. It could make their day. Or, it could completely change their perception of humanity. Don't be afraid to be extra kind, thoughtful, or sensitive to someone. Don't be afraid to hold the door or lend a penny. It's the little things that matter most.

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