Many people in the periphery of my world are suffering through much sadness these days. There are loved ones just passed over, and loved ones still being missed a year later. People are in need of kindness and I’m not close enough to them to provide it. I desperately want to say to those near and dear to them, “Step up, do what needs to be done, put your own wishes aside.” But, I’m not close enough to those people to have an impact, either.
It’s amazing how often life seems to come down to relationship and if the one you have with someone is strong enough to make an impact. In these cases I am not close enough to help – either directly to the person hurting, or the people who are closer to them.
So, all I can do is offer what minimal comfort I can, and hope more meaningful kindnesses will come their ways. Sometimes those things arrive in ways we could never imagine in advance.
One of the days I was most intensely missing my mom after her passing it was a stranger at the lunch table next to mine who comforted me. She was not part of my world before or since. But, she was there in that moment, as if ordained.
We never know if we are the teacher or the student. Maybe it was I who needed the lesson to reach out. Maybe it was she who needed the lesson to respond. Maybe it was both. Regardless, I remain thankful for that moment of grace.
All of us have so much potential for incredible kindness. But, we are often stingy with it, as if we have only an allotted amount to last us a lifetime and we want to be sparing so we don’t run out of kindness before we run out of days.
I’m confident kindness multiples, in ways we can’t fathom, and could never explain. May we all share some with those who cross our paths in the coming days.