‘Tis the season for kindness, giving, sharing, caring, contributing, and forgiving. It’s also a time of reflection and remembrance. The holidays mark a time where many of us look back on the year and pick out milestones. We are either joyful at the successes, sorrowful over the losses, or both. This year has been a roller-coaster for me, but tonight I’d like to highlight the importance of acts of kindness.
Think about it; the season revolves around the ability (and desire) to do good for others. To give a gift that another appreciates; to give a little more of yourself to a cause you believe in; to pitch in for those in need. After all, those Salvation Army bell-ringers that so many people walk past, they are people too. They are generous individuals donating their time to the task of collecting for people who go without many of the luxuries we take for granted.
My year has been shaped by the kindness of others. It’s been a hard year, but I’ve had the profound fortune of being surrounded by kind, caring people who have been there to pick me up when I’ve fallen the hardest. Few people are as fortunate in that way as I am.
But this isn’t that unusual.
Look at small towns all over. There’s a mentality there. There’s a good neighbor attitude. And while there may be negative feelings between so-and-so and what’s-their-name, there is always, always someone to turn to when you need kindness. I think rural communities come inherent with some chemical in the water that causes genetic kindness…call it a mutational sense of community. We’re all in this together, and we might as well help each other along the way.
Luckily for me, this has spread beyond the physical, geographical small town. That mentality has become part of social media, as well.
So, as Christmas approaches, I thank you all for any acts of kindness. Not just towards me, either. For any act of kindness you’ve done this year. It’s the time to reflect on that and expand. It’s the time to show gratitude and pay it forward. So, thank you. Thank you, sincerely, from the bottom of my heart. When I needed it most, there was kindness. I hope everyone can receive that kind of support in their hard times like I have.