Tuesday, September 24, 2013


A Simple Act of Kindness

by Normandy D. Piccolo

Today I was in the grocery store doing typical pre-weekend shopping. I rounded the corner, pushing my semi-full creaking cart onto aisle seven, when I noticed an elderly man staring at a selection of sponges. A look of utter confusion was pasted upon his wrinkled face. He picked up one sponge, adjusted his eyeglasses, squinted while reading the label, only to put the sponge back and repeat the same process with another sponge. This went on for a few minutes, while I struggled to find the right laundry detergent displayed across from him. Too many choices.

The typical response to the elderly man’s predicament would be to ignore the man and go on with shopping. But I personally could not do it. I had to help. And so I did. I walked up to the elderly man and said, “Hi. Can I help you with the sponges?” He turned to me and with a slight tear perched in the corner of his left eye, said, “Oh yes, please. I’m so lost without my wife.”

Through a brief exchange, I learned the sweet elderly man was a recent widower and this was his first time grocery shopping without his wife. Apparently she did all of the shopping throughout their forty-seven years of marriage. He was completely disoriented and did not know which sponge to purchase in order to wash the dirty pots and pans piled up in the sink at home. 

After a few quick questions and some additional polite conversation I was not only able to help this man find the perfect sponge for the job, but I was also able to help put a smile on his face by simply offering him a few minutes of my time. I wished him well and walked away with a smile on my face too. It felt wonderful to help someone.

The take away message from this short encounter is this....

When we are being bullied, we are often made to feel as if we don’t matter - that any contributions in life mean nothing. But that is simply untrue. You do matter. And so do your contributions - big or small. Sometimes taking the focus off of ourselves and our problems and giving a moment of our time to someone else can help lift us up after enduring periods of being torn down by a bully. 

I’ve mentioned this before in my previous blog, but I felt it worth mentioning again. Words may hurt...but they can also save a life. Doing something as simple as saying “Hi” to someone passing by, giving a compliment on someone’s outfit or hair, volunteering with an organization really does make a difference. It matters to you and to the person whom you are giving your time too. 

You never know...you may pass someone in the hallway at school one day who has been bullied so badly they want to harm themselves because no one wants to be their friend. Your simple smile and “Hi” could literally save their life - and you may never even know that it did - and that’s okay.

Just a little something to think about....

Never Let A Bully Win.
Fight Back.

Hugs - XX

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