Yesterday I encountered a situation that left a mark on me. My first meeting with a new individual, through a mutual friend, proved to me that decency goes a long way and ignorance can ruin any moment. My friends and family will attest to the fact that I can be outspoken, harsh, and sometimes annoying, but I try extremely hard to be anything but to strangers. Well, that sounded horrible. I surely do not mean anything by that, but being blessed with my strong-willed, slightly opinionated personality also comes with a heart of gold. I’m not boasting, yet being honest. And that’s another thing.. this person that I speak of from yesterday may have one thing going for her.. honesty. If in her unreasonable rant towards others that do not agree with her every word, she speaks the truth, well, I can’t fault her for that.
What I do fault her for is this… We come across new people every day. Some more than others, yet that doesn’t negate the fact that people are people and we are surrounded. Likely, we do not know the stranger’s story. That person that is receiving your harsh remarks could be having the most difficult day and your words just made it worse. Or possibly lost a loved one recently. Maybe they lost their only source of income and are worried how they’ll put food on the table. The amount of unknowns is astounding when encountering someone new. Flashing a nice smile, a kind word, or a friendly nod could do wonders for their day. It costs absolutely nothing to be nice.
In the conversation I had with said lady yesterday I was taken aback by her lack of respect for me as a stranger. Her words were hurtful, her tone was hard, and her lack of charisma made me wonder why I entered the situation to begin with. You see, I did so in an effort to support a friend who was having an event. I am not a client of her’s nor looking to be one. I was simply there to support her. After receiving the cold welcome that I did, I left the venue feeling like I stepped into a world that I was not comfortable with. A situation or feeling that I hope I never put another person in. It left a mark. That’s something that is unwanted in my life. I will never be untruthful to say that I have never said a mean word, believe me I have and I am not proud. Let me tell you a story.. when we lived on the West Coast I often found myself feeling empathy towards people. Unfortunately, this feeling wasn’t something I let show before, even though I felt it. As I grew older I began to see the hurt in people’s eyes. I found a soft spot in my heart for elderly people sitting alone waiting to be greeted by a smiling face. I wondered if they had anyone to show affection to, to spend important days with, or to share a cup of coffee. Were they sitting in a restaurant alone because they enjoyed a quiet meal, or because they had no one to share it with. It didn’t take long before my husband and I were picking up the tabs for others, just trying to be nice. We feel that should have a domino effect. If one person does something nice for a stranger with no expectations, hopefully the next person can do the same. It doesn’t take much to be kind.
We all know of people who just can’t catch a break from bad luck. And we’ve all probably been there more than once. At your lowest point, would your knees have weakened if someone went out of their way to do something nice for you, not because you asked or because they felt obligated, but just because they cared about you. Not everyone has someone to love, or to love them back.. that is truly heartbreaking. Many of us are blessed with loving families and friends that we take for granted. I know I do. As much as I hate to admit it, I feel that my parents should be around forever, even though I know in my heart that no one will. Thinking of losing everything (and everyone!) that we hold dear is enough to bring tears to my eyes. Look, I’m not trying to be a downer. I’m being real. We all need love, kindness, and compassion. It doesn’t matter where it comes from, as long as our hearts are sincere.
Have a wonderful week!! If you see me in line at Starbucks, feel free to buy my coffee! HAHA!! Kidding!! I’m seriously kidding!!
Enjoy your beautiful life!!