By now, you’ve read about Kmart. Random people have paid off stranger’s Kmart layaway in time for Christmas.
The anonymous generosity is spreading from city to city, but the story that remains with me is of a woman who stood at the layaway line and paid for 50 families, 2 carts worth of toys and gave out $50 bills. It is not her giving that strikes me, but her reason: She gave for her husband who passed away earlier this year. The woman never gave her own name; she only asked people to “Remember Ben.”
This is the part of the holidays that I love — the joy of giving. The reminder of our capacity for love and caring. Now, I can’t stand around Kmart with my 2 little kids waiting for strangers or ask anyone to give away $50 bills, but I have another plan that will bring joy to a family most of us don’t know but needs us.
A 9-year-old girl in my community passed away from cancer in April of this year. I don’t know Abbie Waters or her family, but a fellow writer on Richmondmom.com does and the Waters family is asking for our help this first Christmas without her.
They don’t want money or meals. Abbie’s parents are asking people to do one kindness between now and Christmas Eve and to email the act to AbbieWaters@aol.com.
The family will fill Abbie’s empty stocking with the emails of our kindness, and on their first Christmas morning without a little girl to bound down the stairs opening gifts and sharing Christmas day, the parents will read each of our good deeds and see how their baby is still creating so much joy in this world.
No one is asking for much — buy a friend who is struggling a cup of coffee, pay the toll for the car behind you or rake leaves for an elderly neighbor. I am trying to be open to my kindness opportunity presenting itself, but since I don’t like leaving my house, my backup plan is to donate to a charity in Abbie’s name.
I don’t know if kindness can change the world, but it can change one family’s Christmas morning. And that is enough for me.