Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The kindness of others

"Are you going?" my friend Laura asked, armed with her Weight Watchers books as she stopped by my office on the way to Tuesday's meeting.


I barely even looked at her. I didn't have an excuse. I didn't have another commitment. I just decided to kick and stomp my feet and say no.

She gave me her sweet "Ooooookaaaaay" and left my office going where I should have been going.

It's how I was feeling yesterday. It's how I'm feeling most days. All these questions in my head--all these demands of insecure inner demons that I can't shake.

"Why do you keep bingeing?"
"Why are you so lazy?"
"Why didn't you work out again?"
"Why are you gaining weight?"
"Why are you going to let yourself be so hideous at your friend's wedding?"
"What will you do if your low self-esteem does, in fact, ruin your relationship?"

Obviously, I'm still battling some loud, annoying, pesky, hateful demons here.

But yesterday I went to Publix to pick up a few things during lunch. I stood in line to check out, behind an older, slower woman. My first instinct was to sigh and tap my foot. Because clearly I'm a terrible person. She started digging in her purse for money. She couldn't find it.

"Take your time," the cashier said, as the woman became increasingly flustered.

Finally she came up with the cash.

It wasn't enough.

My heart hurt for her. It hurt for me, whose first instinct was to be impatient.

"I've got it ma'am," the bagger said, and came around to use his check card to pay the difference.

My hurt heart was full-on aching then. Such an act of kindness. He helped the woman out with her groceries and gave her a hug, then came back to me and thanked me for my patience as his colleague rang up my items. I managed to choke out, "That was so nice of you," before I got to my car and started sobbing.

I don't know why that affected me so much. It was terribly sad, yet terribly uplifting at the same time. And I was instantly reminded of my own stupid whining. My broken-recordness over my own lack of self control as of late seemed to stop. I remembered my promise to choose joy.

And I started over.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Beautiful amd insightful! Thank you for sharing!