Christmas was great! The family was together and this was the first Christmas for our first granddaughter. Too many wonderful gifts, too much great food, many laughs and hugs. This is what makes all those hard days worth the work.
I was exhausted from all the excitement and all the work leading up to this Christmas so the day after I took the day off. Did nothing and yes I did feel guilty but I ignored it and parked myself on the recliner.
That second day after a perfect Christmas, I met my daughter and grand-baby for a little lunch then I went with memory cards in hand to the local Walgreen's store to get photos developed.
I know, who gets prints of pictures anymore? I do for my non-tech savvy mom and mother in law, one in Pennsylvania and the other in New Jersey. While sitting at that photo machine in Walgreens, a few other people would come and go using the machine next to me. I was trying to edit and zoom in on or put a cute little border around the photos.
Then came in a kid and a young lady. They must have been in their teens. They were trying to figure out how the sizes to get the photo enlarged to see the face of a handsome young man in their photos and other features of the photo machine.
I popped over to show them with a quick lesson. The young lady, the young man’s cousin, told me that the photos were of the guy’s brother who had just passed away. I looked at the kid and saw those eyes before with my own son and his friends.
It’s been three years since a kid they loved left them all devastated. I saw this kid was exactly where they were in his grief.
I helped them a bit and went back to my photos of a happy family on Christmas day. As I went through the photos tweaking them as I went along I noticed that there in the background of one of my pictures of my grand daughter opening her gifts, was the photo of my son Tony and his friend who is in heaven, Ethan.
I placed that photo by the window sill long ago after Ethan left. Once in awhile I thought I should hang this picture somewhere so that the sunlight in the window doesn’t fade the images. I didn’t move the photo and maybe there was a bigger reason that the photo stayed by the window.
Now this photo of two friends all dressed up for homecoming at McEachern, is going to carry a message to this kid from his brother. I told the kid and his cousin to look at stop and take a look at this picture. It is the picture of my son’s friend who died a few years ago. I told them he is always with us and so will his brother be with him.
They and I went back to the process of ordering the prints. I heard these two teens talk about how much do you think this will cost for the prints to the other. Each said how much money they had with them. Sounded like they were doubtful that when the photos were ready they would have enough money to buy their prints. They finished and left!
I asked the cashier if there was anyway that I could pay for their order and told her the reason why I wanted to help. She pulled up their order and it was done, an act of kindness, at a time when no one expected it, no one asked to have a hand out or pushed money at them. This was simple, slide my atm card and an angel over my shoulder can move on to show someone else how to make a difference for a person struggling in their life.
I realize that the simple act of kindness may be anonymous, unknown to the receiver who was helping them at a time of need but by letting others know that there are times in life when we are faced with a moment of the gift. Recognize these moments to make someone else see it and do an act of kindness for others!