Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Forward

It's easy to be cynical. I have a tendency towards it. The negative things are so obvious in our society sometimes that they can easily overshadow the good. What is harder is to be positive, to remember that most people at their core are good, and to see the bright side. Especially at times where it seems nothing is going the way you want.

As strange as it might seem, my faith in humanity was redeemed in the most unlikely of places this week. Twice in the same week, as though someone was telling me that I needed to smile. The first was while I was out shopping for those last Christmas gifts. Amidst the hustle and bustle, the elbowing and jockeying for position over the most sought after gifts, the general rudeness of shoppers, was a man. An elderly gentleman saw that I was struggling to get the bag and two children out the door at the same time. He smiled at Ally, told her to be a good little girl and listen to her mommy, then held the door open. As I passed him in the doorway, he sweetly replied that I was to have a Merry Christmas. By the time I could turn around to thank him, he was gone.

The next morning, the last day of school, after I dropped the kids off and before coming home to pick up the rest of the things I needed to take back to school for the parties, I stopped for a much needed cup of coffee. A very much needed cup. I pulled into the drive-through and placed my order, spacing out to the radio in line. As seems to happen all the time, I was starting to tear up over some sentimental Christmas song when it was my turn at the window. I drove up and the barista handed me my cup. Then informed me that my order had been paid by the gentleman before me. A complete stranger had done something for me. For me? I told the barista that I would wait until someone came behind me, and I would do the same. Pay it forward.

There really is such a thing as the Christmas spirit. And it is alive and well. Share it.

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