“Surprise,” is what I heard though it might have been a different word. I was in the phone handling business when a package plopped on my desk. In a blur the blue sweater clad lad playing delivery boy rushed out of the room. On the phone I heard a laugh. It was a conspiracy!!! The person on the phone was stalling while her partner in crime made the delivery of the most adorable owl bag and a scrumptious, heavenly cupcake.
I was smiling. My co-worker was smiling, the conspirators were smiling….it was awesome.
It was thoughtful. It was a surprise. It was fun. It was a 2 minute gesture.
What they didn’t know was:
- I’d been going 90 to nothing all day and was feeling the panic of being overwhelmed.
- They didn’t know that Friday’s were a struggle for me. Friday’s were my trigger. Friday’s were my nightmare. Friday’s were family night. Friday’s were the start of the weekend. Friday’s were the night you wanted to kick back with an adult beverage and re-cap the week with someone who gave a damn and who knew you well enough to to hear the words but understood what you weren’t saying. Friday’s reminded me that…well…Friday’s were reality.
- They didn’t know that-as silly as it seems-the impending holiday of love had me twitchy. They didn’t know this precious valentine was the only one I would get. (Omg that sounds pitiful)
- They didn’t know that their sneak attack lightened the weight on my chest.
- They didn’t know that a cupcake and a decorated owl bag served as justifiacation that I was doing something right and that hard work mattered.
- They didn’t know that I am fighting a losing battle with depression. They didn’t know that their gesture kept the sad at bay a few extra minutes and allowed me a chance to breathe and focus on happy versus sad. Which I really, really want to do.
- They didn’t know that my suprise catapulted me into a attitude of gratitude.
- They didn’t know I’d had coversations all day with people who were terrified about their futures and their livelihood. And I ached for each of them. And I silently had similar fears that I kept to myself today.
- They didn’t know my son was failing a class.
- They didn’t know I’d had to be the bad parent and suspend his swimming and not let him to to the first party all year that he’d been invited to. They didn’t know how much that broke my heart.
- They didn’t know the school had scheduled another meeting to talk about my young ones struggles.
- They didn’t know that I had made the decision that it was time to date.
- They also didn’t know the idea of going on line, selling myself and hoping someone liked what they saw was as close to hell as I ever hoped to come. But loneliness was worse. They didn’t know I’d decided to put in my big girl panties (not literally) and take a chance. And try not to vomit while doing it.
- They didn’t know that the first “like” I had closely resembled an axe murder which has me questioning what I could attract. They didn’t know the second like went straight to “meet for coffee” or that I had serious doubts that I was capable of a date. What the hell do I have to talk about?
- They didn’t know that I was doing the single-mom-creative-accounting-juggling act to compensate for some late “support”.
- They didn’t know I’d worked until 9:30 the night before but was still way behind.
- They didn’t know that a good nights sleep had alluded me for…oh months
- They didn’t know that my pants were a size that left me disgusted with myself. That didn’t stop me from eating the cupcake but….
When they decided to deliver a decadent cupcake in a whimsical owl bag they had no idea what a huge impact it would have on my day. A single act of kindness had me asking myself what I could do for someone else to make them feel as good as they’d made me feel.
To them it was a cupcake. To me it was so much more. It goes to show that you never know what impact a phone call, a simple note or a kind word has on someone. It was a reminder to me the impact of kindness. Kindness.
In a world of tension and drama; differing opinions and uncertain futures kindness was something we could all agree on. Kindness doesn’t have to cost a thing. Kindness takes a minute but lasts 100 times longer.
It was a cupcake and a funny faced owl bag. What they didn’t know was how much that cupcake and owl bag meant.
What kindness can you share tonight or tomorrow?