#62 Random Act of Kindness

Scatter Kindness

#62 Random Act of Kindness – 100 day challenge.

All Acts of Kindness are written in the participants own words and the only purpose of this challenge was to scatter kindness.

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Her decision to NOT do this RAK, has haunted her.  Here is her story.

Normally I like to go to Wal-Mart later in the evening to shop as it is less busy. One evening I went to pick up a few items which actually turned into a cart full because that’s how it goes at Wal-Mart. Very few lines were open. I normally do self check out but this night I had more than normal and didn’t want to hold up the line so I jumped in a regular checkout.

I ended up behind a lady who apparently was having problems with a few canned items.  She was dressed casually not overly done up nor dressed like she just rolled out of bed. She was accompanied by a completely adorable 2 yr old boy all clean in his footsie jammies with gym shoes and winter coat. She was well spoken, not loud and the little boy was well behaved.

Usually I get inpatient behind people who hold up the line. I think I have a life too let’s get moving even though I really have no where important to be. I sat for a few minutes behind this lady who seemed to be slightly embarrassed. I felt if I jumped to another line it would make her feel worse in a way. So I waited patiently and acted like it was no big deal. After all I really didn’t have anywhere to be.

As I listened to what was going on, I started to feel sorry for the lady in front of me with her child. The cashier rang up almost all of her items except for a few cans of kidney beans. She was trying to explain that she was looking for the cheapest cans and this was all that was available. This is when I noticed that she was a welfare recipient.

She went on to explain in a very nice well spoken manner that she was following the state rules by picking the cheapest items. Apparently she did well, I saw the items on the belt and they all rang up fine except for these three cans of cheapest kidney beans that they had left on the shelf.  Most of us buy the expensive brands so at least these were one step up from great value.  They were not magic beans or even beans made of gold. Just regular old beans that she obviously planned on using for a meal. The weather outside is horrible, she has this small child, it’s dark, she doesn’t want to go to another store (I’m assuming) and maybe she can’t make it  tomorrow. No one knows because she’s not complaining she’s simply stating that she picked the cheapest beans available.

The cashier obviously abiding by the rules will not let her have the beans, calls the manager over, the manager will not let her have the beans either.

By this time I jumped to the line next over as I found it ridiculous that they couldn’t find some way to just let her buy the 3 cans of kidney beans. I was getting increasingly irritated as we all know Wal-Mart is very bad at keep things in stock. They sent someone back to verify these were the cheapest beans and they were…yes she’s not a liar and if she was don’t you think she would go for the most expensive bean?

Still they refused to give this lady the three cans of beans. I felt angry that even though they were following the rules this giant multi billion dollar corporation could some how not figure a way to give them to her. Who knew beans could cause so much anger in me!

I thought about it for a moment….should I offer help?

How would it make her feel?

Embarrassed?

Happy?

Sad?

She didn’t get her beans and I felt horrible. I also felt horrible for thinking a random act of kindness might embarrass her more. In fact she probably would not have felt that but just relieved to have those three cans of beans she needed.

That situation has stuck with me and bothers me.

When I received the message about participating in this challenge, this instantly popped in my head. There are many ways to be kind to others and you shouldn’t sit and ponder the outcome, just jump and do it!

You can make a new friend, put a smile on someone’s face, make their day or even their dinner with a few cans of beans!

~~~

 I know I’ve been a recipient of a few random acts of kindness and it does change the way the rest of your day plays out or just makes a great day even better!

Now I actually did act on a random act of kindness that is simple and slightly boring but satisfying.

Coming from a family that has and had military members I’m very supportive of vets and the men and women that are still active. I’ve always donated money and said thank you for your service to our country. I however always wanted but again never acted on seeing a uniformed officer out eating and paying for their lunch or dinner.

Walking into Starbucks one day I turn and see a man in uniform approaching as well. I say to myself here’s that chance, I order my coffee and go to pay I say I will cover his bill as well. He has a stunned look on his face and for a moment I think uh oh this is going to be a very large order(laughing).

He orders a simple coffee he says thank you so much. I say it’s the least I can do thank you very much for your service. We talked for a few minutes as he was saying what he does in the military. He says thank you again so very much and I thank him again as well.

As we exit the building he says excuse ma’am I would like to give this to you and hands me a post card. I look down at it laugh and say awww thanks. He said I didn’t want to ruin that moment of someone doing something nice for someone so I kept it in my pocket…….turns out it was a card for a free coffee! Two random acts of kindness!

Have a Flan-tastic Day and Scatter some Kindness,

Donna Flanagin

Random me:  We all have passed by opportunities to reach out to someone with a RAK, but rarely does change us.  Great story. 

 

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Wonderful story about choices and how the choices contribute to our happiness or stress. Loved it.

    Cool, unexpected ending too. Fun.

    • This one was long but worth reading I think. We have all been there.

  2. Great story. A lesson for us all.
    Donna again thank you for this litany.
    It fills my day with sunshine warmth.

    • Patty, well then it was all worth while. One smile is worth it, every other smile is frosting. 🙂


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