March 5, 2018
Today was one of those Mondays when I ran out the door at 6:45 AM and didn’t return home to slice until well after 10:00 PM. Although I was running the minute my feet hit the floor, my day was filled with excitement as I found myself continuously pondering what I was going to slice . . . was I going to write about the ride to school with my 14-year old daughter, who actually still likes me, or perhaps a reflection on my mid-year evaluation. I considered writing about the lecture a friend delivered telling me that I really needed to find balance and make time for me . . . perhaps that will be a future slice. I contemplated writing about the time I spent supporting perhaps the world’s greatest teacher, my best friend, who is as she says, “being held captive” as she lives with dementia. What a day; so many slicing possibilities.
What resonates most with me is my experience at the gas pump. For the record, I am not a high maintenance woman. However, there are a few tasks that I just don’t do; pumping gas is one. I realize I am very fortunate in that I don’t even have to think about the gas level in my car. Somehow my husband instinctively knows when my car is running low. He asks, “Georgia, do you need gas?” I always give him the same response. “I have no idea.” Unless the red light flashes on my dashboard, I never know how much gas is in the tank. Tonight the light flashed and I had no choice but to fill my tank myself. I’m so happy I did.
As I wrangled with the gas pump to accept my credit card and let me begin the dreaded task, a gentleman approached me saying, “You look like you’ve had quite a day!” He had no idea the can he was about to open. As he pumped my gas he explained that I was his “Number 17.” Exhausted, I did not make the connection until the stranger continued his story of his struggle with the tragedy in Parkland, Florida and his commitment to spread 17 acts of kindness each day. As the stranger was filling my tank he genuinely asked me about my day. The tank was filled long before I unloaded my day on him and yet he continued to listen.
I thanked my stranger for picking me to be his number 17 and listened as he shared with me his other 16 random acts. I realized that I frequently have kind thoughts throughout my day; yet many of them go unsaid. Imagine if, like this stranger, I took the time to randomly share them?! I’m looking forward to what tomorrow brings and for not letting kindness go unsaid.