The Generosity of Kindness – Beach Walk #14

While on our weekly beach walk, Noah and I reflected on all of the amazing people we have met and the experiences we have had since moving to Miami. According to the Cambridge Dictionary,  Generosity is a willingness to give more than is expected. We are on the other side of this, an awareness that more is being received than was expected.

We have certainly been the recipients of more than was expected. We made the decision in June to move to Miami to be closer to Melissa, Antonella and Peter after Michael’s passing. Dear friends stepped in to make this happen, we downsized, packed, prepared and put our house on the market. We got to Miami just in time for Elise to start her Junior year.

Once we arrived in Miami, people we had just met began to step in and help us get settled and find our way.  As my husband mentioned in his video, this has not stopped in the 6 months we have been here, the generosity continues. We have received opportunities to participate in activities, shared meals, and a general inclusion to people’s lives that has been welcoming beyond belief. As he said, the invitations and the treats are delicious, however it is the time and sharing of themselves that has really touched us.

There has been amazing generosity of others taking the time to get to know us and spend time with us, I am grateful for all of it.  However, the thought I was trying to share with Noah was that these acts of Generosity which have been not only huge but plentiful has opened up a window of awareness for me to a whole other Generosity.  The Generosity of Kindness. I am remembering all of those small acts of kindness that I have received from strangers over the years and how they feel so generous as they too are moments where I received so much more than I expected. The thought was that the grand generosity has increased the value of the smallest acts to me.

The police officer who cheered “go mom, go” working the intersection around mile 12 during the half marathon.  I am still thinking about how that moment got me to go that final mile. He cheered, a small act of kindness, yet I am still smiling about it 2 months later. He cheered.

A moment 12 years ago, when a cashier smiled. It happened a month or so after my sister-in-law, Ashley was killed in a car accident.  I walked around in a fog of grief, going to the grocery store was an unbearable event, I would regularly go to the store, fill a cart with groceries and then become so overwhelmed with emotion I would have to leave the store without the groceries.  The first time I actually made it through the checkout line at the grocery store, Elise who was 4 at the time was with me, as I put our items on the belt I could feel the tears coming and I knew we would have to leave, that I could not do this, that I would be falling apart in a moment.  But, right at that moment, Elise asked the woman working the register, what her favorite color was. The woman paused and looked at us, I was afraid an unkind moment was about to erupt but then she smiled, a huge smile and said “wow, no one has asked me in a very long time what my favorite color is, my favorite color is yellow”.  To see her smile and kindness toward Elise was such a gift. That smile helped me to move forward; I think of it often. She smiled.

I am certain that as you read this you are thinking of all sorts of kind gestures that others have bestowed on you.  The generosity of others and the kindness that is all around us when we look for it.