In part I of this series I discussed my sons stolen stroller and my attempt to get it back when finding a homeless woman pushing it in our neighborhood. I should add she was not using it for her child which would have changed my view. This situation got me thinking about how I am a giving person, how I find it hard to turn down a person or animal in need and why sometimes it feels like I should give up being kind to those in need.
About a week after the stroller incident I was getting my son out of the car and taking him into subway. We were out and about and heading home which was about a 20-min drive, I didn't have lunch for him so I wanted to grab a quick sandwich before he fell asleep. Anyhow as I approached the shop a man outside the subway asked me if I could buy him a sandwich and I told him I would see what I could do. Have you been to subway lately? I wasn’t even eating lunch here I was going home to eat, I wasn’t about to spend money on a sandwich for a stranger, I battled with my conscious for a few minutes and I decided to buy him a bag of chips. When I left the store, I walked over to him and handed him the bag of chips. He took them and as I turned to walk away he said “ma’am?” As I turned around he handed me the bag of chips back and said, “I’m waiting to get a sandwich.”
“You don’t want the chips?” I asked with mom voice taking over
“No, I want a sandwich.”
“I just bought you this bag of chips and you’re giving them back?”
“You seriously don’t want these?”
“No but maybe he does.” He looks at another guy on the curb and asks him if he wants them and that guy doesn’t hesitate. I turn and walk away in a rage of confusion and irritation.
In my opinion, not to mention the way I was raised is you take what you are given, you appreciate what you do get. In this case I didn’t want to spend money on a sandwich but I felt I was still being kind by giving him chips. I shouldn’t be offended by a homeless person i realize and should consider that he’s likely not in his right mind and drop it, I just can’t! After telling my husband he then told me a story of a time where a man asked him for money and he instead bought him a burger and the guy said no thanks I want money. WOW! I just can’t believe that people who can’t provide for themselves would be so rude and ungrateful to people who are kind enough to give to them.
But here’s the thing for every ungrateful person in this world there are probably a bunch of people who would be more than happy to accept your kindness. I am a giver, 95% of the time I dontate mine and my families items as opposed to trying to sell them, I donate a dollar at check out when I am asked, I put a German Shepard the size of myself in the back of my car and drive across town to the CCSPCA. I will never regret my kindness and although I will be slightly annoyed by those who are less than gracious I will be glad I am not that person. Let me also be clear I am not only speaking about homeless people or people in need, I am also speaking of friends and family. People who are not grateful or accepting of time or effort that you put into something. I will not stop being me and I will not let unkind people dim my efforts to brighten lives I’ve touched.
What makes you happy? What makes you feel good about yourself and the world around you? Stick with your strengths and be happy about your efforts. You should never cease giving and being kind because you never know whose day or even year you will make.
Hold a door open, smile, say hello, give a tip, be nice. If not for them for you and your conscious.