Random Acts of "Kindness"

Archive for February, 2016

ADMITTING TALENTS

Words coming out of my mouth surprised me the other day. I was in the entrance of a book store, looking at a collection of adult coloring books. A woman was standing there also, trying to decide if she wanted to buy a book, commit herself to coloring and trying to decide what materials she wanted to use. I shared my experience. She thought coloring might help with her anxiety.

At my daughter’s retreat in the Fall, I saw a group of women enjoying coloring, sitting at a table — using colored pencils. Shopping for Christmas presents, a selection of coloring books caught my attention. I bought a different book for two of my daughters, then bought a book so I could play too. I wanted to include tools so they could color right away. I bought 3 sets of markers. I was very happy with the deep color on the page — I WAS VERY UNHAPPY when I noticed the color soaked through to the other side. I returned two sets of markers to the store.

Next I tried crayons but once again I was unhappy with the results. Third try was colored pencils — I bought a set of 24 pencils. I was happy with the finished effect. When I paint, I often mix my own colors, or add white to get different shades. Having only 24 colors that I couldn’t mix was too confining. Thankfully our son had a big set of colored pencils that he shared. His set has more than six shades of green — just what I needed for coloring a garden that had many different leaves.

So when I was talking to the woman about coloring, I shared my experience. I also mentioned that I was a painter — those words, coming out of my mouth, surprised me. I usually don’t admit to having a special talent.

That isn’t the first time this week that my mouth opened to share something about myself. In this case I wouldn’t call it a talent. I accompany my husband to an exercise class at the Veteran’s clinic he attends. Recently a new person joined our group — it was his first class. And the class was more energetic than most. I was wearing my watch that measures my heart rate — I have trouble finding my pulse — and the reading was over 120. I couldn’t help but notice the rapid breathing of our new member — my mouth opened — words came out cautioning him to be careful — rest if he needed to, we didn’t want him to collapse onto the floor. Afterwards I explained to one of the volunteers that I can’t help mentioning something when I see or hear something hazardous. After my cautioning words, the volunteers gave him more assistance.

I seem to have become grandmother to the world.

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I GET STORIES

I NEED STORIES. I’m often pestered to write a thought ramble to share with you. If my life is routine, nothing exciting happening, I have nothing to write about — so I’m given ideas. For a long time I have felt that I’m usually in the right place, at the right time to either be helped myself or to help someone else. I just have to be aware, paying attention — not distracted.

There is another purpose to the stories I’m given, not only to write but to physically “tell.” Many years ago I attended an audition looking for performers. I was active in the storytelling guild world at the time and decided to try out. Many people carried equipment with them. I realized that I carried my stories in my pocket — there is always room for more.

Okay — I’m rambling — is there a point to this? YES! Recently “I found a dime” and wrote about it. Recently I had the opportunity to “tell” the story. One of my neighbors is “challenged.” I don’t know much about her — age, name, medical problem. I first noticed her a few years ago — she keeps to herself when out. I first thought she was a child, and possibly lost. Although I often saw her, I never spoke to her. The opportunity didn’t present itself. Since I was concerned, when I saw her landlady I asked a few questions. I learned that she wasn’t a child instead a woman in her forties and capable of living alone. If I learned what her challenge was I have since forgot. Her path has crossed mine a few times, enough where we now exchange a few words. Mostly it is about the weather — staying warm, being careful.

I was out walking Robin when we met last week. For a change the sun was out, light wind, the temperature comfortable for winter. She shared a secret with me, the passing of her mother in the Fall. She asked that I pray for her mother in heaven. I shared a few short stories with her, demonstrating that those who have passed are often with us when needed. I ended my short stories with my recent experience of finding a dime. Since it was recent, it made an impression. Did it help her with her loss? I don’t know. But I find it comforting, when I’m not being hit on the head, to know that those who have passed are still with me, even if they are on the other side, even if I don’t see or hear them.

I FOUND A DIME

There are many stories in which people find nickels or dimes as signs that a loved one who has passed is with them. I’ll admit that has occasionally happened to me. I’ll also admit that I seldom find money when I’m out and about. My eyes are usually focused on people, dogs, flowers, birds, trees etc. If the pavement is icy, I’ll pay more attention to where I’m walking. Although the temperature had a wind chill below zero, the pavement was dry. So why was I excited? Why am I sharing?

Often when I receive a response or find money, I’m storming heaven about something or I’ m very worried. I remember once I either was storming heaven or pleading my case, when a group of crows cawed three times. I don’t remember what I was doing, other than walking, that caused their response. That occurred many years ago, but it made an impression. That year I had read that crows were a spiritual sign from the CREATOR. I do know that I was grateful for the response.

So why am I sharing the news that I found a dime? If you have read many of my thought rambles, you know that I am aware that I walk to a different drummer. You know that I am aware that I have “friends in high places.” I will also admit that on a daily basis, I’m seldom aware of “their HELP.” At the same time, maybe I walk with more “awareness.” I don’t like getting hit on the head.

In any case, I’m extremely worried about a friend of mine. She fell a month ago and fractured a hip. She had surgery almost immediately but instead of recovering she is still in a great deal of pain. Instead of being released from the hospital and continuing a very busy life she is confined in a nursing home. And she is not happy, possibly depressed. My Life this month is EXTREMELY BUSY. My husband and his health is occupying most of my life. I have not been able to call or visit like I would like to. She was moved to another room and I didn’t have her new phone number. Thankfully her husband had it and I phoned her. I was very concerned when I hung up. Walking Robin, I sent up an SOS to heaven on her behalf. The SOS might have been for a short time or rather lengthy — I don’t remember. What I do remember is that looking down, I saw a dime. When I was young (a long, long time ago) a dime paid for a phone call or a ride on the bus. Does the dime indicate that the call was received? Does the dime indicate that I should continue to storm heaven on her behalf? Your guess is as good as mine but I was HAPPY to see the dime.

Of course, I will be VERY HAPPY if they find out what is causing her pain and she is able to quickly recover.

GLASS

I trust that I haven’t given the impression that because I have “friends in high places” stuff doesn’t go wrong in my life. If I have — I’m sorry — I have mislead you. STUFF HAPPENS!

And it did on a VERY COLD Wednesday morning. At 5:30 AM I heard a crash — I didn’t know if something happened to our house or if it was outside. I just knew I heard a noise that was disturbing. I checked our back bedrooms first. Robin was sleeping comfortably on the bed. I looked outside to see if there had been an accident. Everything was quiet out on the street. I got dressed and went downstairs. The first thing I noticed was that the curtain had fallen behind the Christmas tree. ??????

Further investigation revealed a big hole in our window. VERY, very cold air was rushing in. WHAT had happened? WHY did the window break? HOW can I cover the hole? A few ideas popped into my head but nothing was sticking and I couldn’t find anything to cover the hole. I decided that I needed help and woke my husband. Soon after he came downstairs we discovered that another window had been broken. AND we discovered the cause. Rocks had been thrown through our windows. That explained the noise. Neither my husband, my son nor Robin were woken from their sleep.

Thankfully we had duck tape in the house. A few rolls to be precise. We also had plastic window covering left over from the years before thermal windows. (I don’t miss covering our windows every winter but I’m glad I didn’t throw the plastic out.)

I called the company who had installed our windows. Their phone number had been disconnected, they must have gone out of business. I looked up two other companies that installed thermal windows and left a message. When my son joined us, he thought cardboard would be a good idea and took over the task. He also had a good idea who had thrown the rocks. We agreed.

My husband and I have been attending an exercise and nutrition class at a local Veterans Clinic. He decided that he wasn’t going to go to class that morning. I knew I NEEDED to go, I NEEDED to exercise. I couldn’t go without him. Although I’m a veteran of many things — I’m don’t have the credentials to attend a VA program.

During a break between the exercise and the nutrition program one of the companies I phoned returned my call. I learned that they only replaced windows unless they did the original work. The man who phoned suggested a glass company, it would be cheaper.

One of the volunteers at the clinic knew of a glass store in the neighbor hood but didn’t know the address. He said it was right next to a beauty shop that had a sign in front. When we left the clinic and turned down the street, traffic was heavy. My husband pulled to the side to let traffic pass so we could poke. As I looked at the shops, I noticed that he had pulled up to the glass shop. I don’t know if we would have found it if he hadn’t stopped. The shop replaced thermal windows, they came out the next day.

Windows are ordered. I removed half of the ornaments from the tree before they came and our son moved the tree out from the wall. New windows are ordered, they should be in next week. The tree is still up, ornaments moved around but it will be down before the windows are installed. Temperatures are in the single digits — heading for below zero. Thankfully the duck tape, plastic wrap, and cardboard have kept out the cold air.

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