On November 20th, I challenged myself to do ten random acts of kindness before the end of the year. I also challenged all of you to do at least one act and to tell me about it so I could share it here on my site.
A few of you went right to work and left a comment about your RAK or told me about it on Facebook – paying for the car behind you at a fast food restaurant or at Starbucks, paying for lunch for your coworkers, helping an elderly person who dropped their newspaper coupons in a windy parking lot, and more.
I promised that once I had reached the halfway mark that I’d share my own RAKs, so here they are:
- My first RAK was indeed totally random and is what inspired me to start this challenge. About three weeks ago, I had to have some work done on my car. J was taking me to pick it up and it wasn’t quite ready so we stopped at a Burger King to have dinner and kill time. A homeless lady was waiting by the drive-through window, and when we walked toward her to enter the building she asked us for money so she could get something to eat. I told her I didn’t have any money, which was true, but that if she came inside I’d buy her dinner. And so she did. She asked if she could order anything on the menu, and I told her yes. But she was humble and just got a large Whopper combo. She did not sit with us, and even finished before we did. When she got up to leave, she thanked me and I asked her if she had gotten enough to eat. She said she had. While standing in line, she’d told me about being sick and how she’d just got out of the hospital. She spends the night in a local shelter, but has to be there by 8pm at night. She was late one night and ended up sleeping out in the rain and catching pneumonia. It made me feel really good to do something for someone like this, especially with the holidays approaching.
- A week later J and I went to the mall to go to the movies. We were early so we had lunch at Chevy’s. Our server was supper nice and even made us laugh. She made jokes about her being the Chef too. She checked on us regularly, kept the salsa and drinks filled, and made the overall experience very enjoyable. She was definitely going to get a good tip, and when the check came I got an idea. Our bill was only $28, so I tipped her $28 and wrote “Happy Holidays!” on the receipt. We got up and walked out before she even collected the bill. Sometimes not getting to see the person’s reaction makes it even better, like when Missy and Jacki (see comments on the previous post) paid for the car behind them at a drive-through window.
- That next week, I continued my RAK challenge by buying a coworker a muffin at a charity bake sale at work. I also gave extra money for the charity. A small act, yes, but it still felt great and the coworker was very very appreciative.
- This one was really fun! A few days after the bake sale I put $1.25 in cash in an envelope with a note that said: You just got RAK’ed (Random Act of Kindness)! Enjoy a soda on me or pay it forward. I wrote “Are You Thirsty? Open this!” on the outside of the envelope and taped it to the soda machine at work. About an hour later, I found the envelope still on the machine. It had been opened and the money was gone. But shortly after, I spied someone adding money to the envelope! By lunch time, the envelope had been removed, but it was still fun to think someone actually did pay it forward.
- This one was an easy one, and something I try to do every year though it often gets overlooked. Donate clothing! While swapping out my summer clothes for my winter wardrobe a week ago, I was shocked at the amount of clothing I have that I never end up wearing. I always swear I’ll give it one more season, but I know I’m never probably going to wear it again. Not this year! I parted ways with both summer and winter clothes I knew I was never going to wear again. I even threw in two pairs of shoes I never wear. I usually always drop a bag of clothing off in a donation box each year, but this year I took two full bags. I was proud of that and excited about the room I made in my closet.
So, I’ve got one month left and only 5 RAKs left to do.
Keep doing your own RAKs out there and keep telling me about them. Pay it forward!