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Random Acts of Kindness: Unexpected, Simple, But So Powerful

One of the many reasons I LOVE living in the community of ARNOLD. Simply put, “random acts of kindness.” They happen every day, and oftentimes go unnoticed by the general population. The person who is being thoughtful doesn’t expect a big announcement, accolades from everyone, and in many cases doesn’t want anyone to know who they are. And oftentimes they may never know how their kind gesture has affected the recipient. Today I was the recipient of a kind gesture, totally unexpected, but made my day in a BIG way.

Have you ever extended a completely random act of kindness to someone or received a random act of kindness from someone else? Sometimes you will never know when you do something so simple how your random act of kindness may affect the recipient. Your intent is to be just simply friendly, thoughtful, or kind, but it can mean the world to the recipient or remind them of something they hold dear in memory. Have you ever had that moment when the sight or smell of something invokes a fond memory? All of the sudden you find yourself reminiscing an event, person, or time from the past, and for a moment you realize you have a ridiculously large smile on your face!

Today was one of those days for me. I had the ridiculously large grin on my face because of someone’s random act of thoughtfulness/kindness!!!! I normally wouldn’t share something personal on here, but I thought why not, this exact story is what makes living in our small community wonderful! (Warning, there is a personal story attached only my closest friends know.)

I received a beautiful poinsettia plant today from someone. It was completely unexpected and such a nice surprise! Little did this person know how much I love poinsettias in particular and the reason why. Yes, I know it may seem like just a pretty seasonal plant to some people, but to me, this plant is special for a reason.

It had been a tradition for as long as I could remember, as it is for many; my mom would buy a “red” poinsettia for Christmas. Not long after graduation from high school, I moved out on my own and she would buy me one and give it to me as a gift. It only lasted for a short time, as she passed away two years later from cancer. So consequently, every time I see “red” poinsettias I think of her and it puts a smile on my face—but to get one as a gift for no reason other than thoughtfulness makes it even better. Now the point of the story isn’t to make you feel sad, but to show how something kind and thoughtful can make someone else’s day and put a smile on their face for whatever reason. Today I was given not only the gift of a beautiful holiday plant, but a wonderful memory and a BIG smile!!! Thank you!

—Cheryl Carson, AEDC Director