Today is Tuesday, and Tuesday is “trash day” at our house. In our home, this is a day of scheduled acts of kindness… vs. “random”. I have a story to share, but I have to admit that I was torn about whether to “put it out there”… or not. I am a HUGE believer in “Acts of Kindness” that come from the heart in a spirit of love and generosity. Not attention or recognition. When I came across this quote (below), I knew that sharing my story was the way to go. I realized that in the sharing of these “good deeds” – we are really sharing the “spirit” of these deeds, therefore making them contagious.
“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees. The greatest work that kindness does to others is that it makes them kind themselves.”
It all started about 20 years ago. My twins were very young and absolutely fascinated with watching the trashmen in their big trucks. They would wait for trash day every single week, and then they would pull up their “Little Tikes” chairs to their second story bedroom window and wait… and wait… and wait… for the trashmen to arrive. I cannot honestly tell you how the conversation originally began, but suffice it to say that we decided that the trashmen were probably quite thirsty in the middle of their long, hard day. So we started taking cold sodas out to them when they would arrive. Every week. The problem would arise, however, if we were not there at the moment that they arrived. So we started a new plan. We bought a little cooler that was big enough to hold a few sodas and an ice pack. If we were not going to be there, they knew that the cooler was for them. This soon stretched into winter, and we knew how cold the trashmen must be on their long winter days. So we started making hot chocolate and got a big thermos that we could fill in the morning. The kids would make little “goodie bags” for them at Christmas time with snacks, McDonald’s gift certificates and homemade cookies. This whole idea blossomed into taking sodas on a hot summer day to anyone who looked thirsty… even if it was roofers working on a house three doors down! They had internalized this spirit of kindness and were thinking kind thoughts – independent of their mom – with their own little hearts. Wow.
Fast forward twenty years. Our kids are away at college, and their hearts will always be kind. Tuesday is still trash day… a scheduled act of kindness day that has been so richly rewarded through the years in hugs and smiles and gratitude. WE are blessed. Pass it on…
live happy… laugh, love, dream, create