“I have wept in the night for the shortness of sight
That to someone’s need made me blind;
But I never have yet felt a tinge of regret
For being a little too kind.” ~ Unknown
I work at a store. It’s window service and we sell ice cream and water ice all year long. We make ice cream sundaes, banana splits, gelatis, and sell soda, candy, and some other things.
I get tips a lot. When someone gives me a tip it’s often one or two dollars or some change. On seldom occasions someone gives me a big tip. The biggest tip given to me at once
was around eighteen dollars. That is very rare. I’m always very grateful for tips no matter how much or how little the money is, and the person who gives me one, more for the kindness than the money itself. People don’t have to give me a tip but many do, out of the kindness and goodness of their hearts.
One of the most inspiring tips I ever received is 25 cents.
One busy night at work I saw an old man in line. I love old people. I think they’re cute and am deeply inspired by their deep wrinkles, graying or white hair, their slow movements, laugh lines, their aches and pains, the gnarled joints that reveal strength, endurance, and determination, passion, longing, and vitality entrapped in deteriorating eyes and ears but set free through the power of Touch, their wisdom, that all reveal an undying desire and will to live and survive, to keep going, to push through it all with that sparkle still in their eyes, the smile that never fades, the long life of happiness, heartache, joy, and battles and beauty they have been blessed to know.
The man was looking to his side, smiling warmly. I felt an instant warm affection for him. I saw deep wrinkles around his eyes and mouth, white hair on his balding head. His arthritic fingers had difficulty moving, grasping and his posture wasn’t straight. But he still has something to smile about.
Then I saw what he was smiling at. His grandson. An adorable little boy.
The little boy also had a radiant smile. A joyous smile that seemed to light the night.
He was so eager to order his own food. Usually when kids come with adults the adult orders the food for them. But occasionally a child wants to ask for her/his own.
This little boy, probably around ten years old, was so happy to ask for his own food. A “special needs” child, it was somewhat challenging for him but he attempted, succeeded, and was so proud. He asked for food that costs $2.50.
I spoke to and smiled at him encouragingly to show him how well he was doing. And his grandfather stood back and watched proudly.
The little boy handed me three dollars and I gave him his fifty cents back. He stepped aside to put mustard on his food and let the others in line come up to order. When I went back to the window the little boy said to me, “Excuse me, do you have a tip cup?”
I gladly accept tips but I don’t ask for or expect them and never put a tip cup out. One of the girls I work with does though and her tip cup was on the shelf next to the window since it was just me working that night, so I put it out the window when he asked and he took one of his quarters he got as change, smiled at me, and dropped it in. Again, he was so happy and proud. What a kind and thoughtful
little boy. Full of courage and love.
Glowing with confidence.
My heart welled up with love and gratitude and inspiration.
I said “Thank You so much!!” and smiled and he smiled that unstoppable smile and joyfully replied “You’re welcome!” and they walked away hand in hand. A little boy and an old man.
This little boy doesn’t let a disability stop him or a struggle or a challenging circumstance. He bravely speaks up, exercises his independence, and reaches out in love.
The quarter he gave me is a beautiful, tangible reminder of love, strength, and courage.
I love to help people. It’s one of my favorite things. I’m a very shy girl, sometimes a little bit too reserved, and sometimes I let it limit me.
And sometimes I let my depressive disorder limit me.
Sometimes when I’m deeply depressed I let myself sink and not be the best me I can be. I submerge into a deep abyss and stop everything. Stop writing and reading and sharing uplifting quotes and ideas, stop smiling, repressing all of my creative urges…
And there have been occasions I was in a position to reach out and help someone or speak up or even just make eye contact with and smile at a stranger or someone, to give all of myself, to express my love and compassion and instead, I held back, stood back or looked away in fear.
Fear of what I would look like to others, fear of not being good enough, fear of trying to help but actually making something worse, fear of making a misjudgment and someone really did not need my help or want my kindness, fear of messing up in front of someone and looking silly not in a good way, fear of someone negatively judging me for some reason, fear of coming off as useless or rambling, fear of being misunderstood, fear of someone seeing me truly, seeing me for me and not liking it, the real me, fear of someone not “properly” receiving whatever I wanted to offer, fear.
I let it interfere with my loving compassion, the tenderness that my heart longs to lavish on the world, I let it interfere with my desire, my longing to reach out and embrace, console, heal, and love.
I don’t always let it stop me. But too often, I do.
And a little boy reminded me of that one summer night when he reached out through the loving kindness in his heart and showed me love even though it was a challenge for him.
He was bold enough to ask for what he wanted. And brave enough to love.
And through his own love, kindness, and courage, he was able to encourage and teach/remind me of a lesson. Love is more powerful than fear. More powerful than pain of any kind.
It’s more powerful than any struggle or challenge or disability. It’s more powerful than pain and despair, depression and the desire to give up. If we summon the love in us, it’s more powerful than anything else.
“Livin’ might mean takin’ chances but they’re worth takin'” ~ LeeAnn Womack
The only true disability is the choice to let fear or other unpleasant emotions stand in the way of love. And that disability can be corrected.
My love, my kindness, my willingness to help will not always be gratefully appreciated. I will experience forms of rejection, ridicule, apathy, people who see me for me and don’t like what they see. I will be misjudged now and again. I will be disliked, not appreciated, ignored. And that’s ok. I don’t love merely to be loved in return, to be appreciated and cherished. Those are amazing things to have but I don’t expect or demand them in return for my love, compassion, and kindness.
If someone does not receive my kindness and love the way I intend, it’s ok. It can be painful but it’s worth the risk. I will move forward and love some more. There will always be someone who does not care for my help, love, friendship, and kindness and there will always be someone who does. I won’t always know for sure who will open up and receive my love and compassion and who will not.
“Lovin’ might be a mistake but it’s worth makin'” ~ LeeAnn Womack
But I won’t stand back in fear of those who won’t. I will love again and again. And if it touches someone for the better, my dream is fulfilled. If it’s denied, ignored, ridiculed, criticized, and rejected, I will go on loving. My dream is still fulfilled. My dream to BE a being of love. To be an example of love. Love for others and the self. Love for people I don’t know personally and for people I do. Love for the most loving and beautiful people. Love for difficult people and ones who just don’t care. Love for those who aren’t easy to love.
“I’ve got a song
And I carry it with me and I sing it loud
If it gets me nowhere, I’ll go there proud.” ~ Jim Croce
Love can be an emotion, an affective feeling and it can be a verb, an action, an expression. Whenever we reach out to make the world a better place or touch someone’s life for the better with the light of our own lives, we reach out in love.
I hope you, too, will reach out in Love if it’s your true passion. If Love is your Way I hope you honor it and love. Love any way you can. Writing positive and uplifting comments to people on blogs, statuses, videos, encouraging your friends and family unconditionally, volunteering to help people or animals, being a loving mother or father or friend, working to help people, giving to those in need, smiling sweetly at people, helping homeless animals or people, sharing uplifting quotes, a warm hug or friendly hello, providing warmth and light to those in the cold darkness…you don’t need money or a specific job or even a lot of time. You can incorporate love into your every day. The most simple acts of kindness are enough to light up the world.
Even when you struggle to move your tongue, I hope you speak in Love. And when your hands tremble in fear, I hope you still reach out to touch. When your heart is broken and scarred I hope it continues to guide you, anyway. And when you’re lonely and your arms are holding yourself tightly in your sorrow and despair, I hope you find the strength to let go and embrace another, someone else who may need your loving arms, your broken heart, your deep understanding. When your eyes are filled with tears and pain, I hope you find the courage still, to look deeply into someone else’s and find something that resonates with you, look into someone else’s eyes and see a reflection of yourself.
“At the end of the day, it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. It’s about what you’ve done with those accomplishments. It’s
about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.”
I am forever grateful to all of those who remind me. Remind me to love, to take risks, to honor me, even though it won’t always be easy.
“Everyone needs reminders that the fact of their being on this earth is important and that each life changes everything.”
I heard and read the word “encourage” my whole life and knew what it means for about as long as I can remember. It means to bring some kind of support to someone, to help give someone a push to keep going. But until now I never realized the word “courage” in it and the “en” in front of the “courage.” To inspire courage. Like the word “enable.” able=ability “en” to empower or allow. To help someone find the courage that dwells deep within.
It’s an interesting revelation.
We have courage or potential for courage deep within us already and someone can help coax it out for us, even a young child.
We often think about what we can teach and remind children but let us stop for a minute and think what a child can remind and teach us.