Guest Author - danielle barone
St. Valentines evening I was driving towards the Sunshine Skyway Bridge. Driving over this bridge is a magical experience because the waterviews are mesmerizing. The bridge is designed in such a way that when you travel over it, you feel as if you are suspended in the air overlooking the ocean from the heavens. When you are in the middle of the bridge, it actually looks as if time is standing still and the scenes are beautiful.
As I was driving on the highway, I looked forward to approaching the bridge, as I consider it a pleasure. But on this night as I was waiting in the toll lane, I remember my mind was very distracted and I was feeling down about someone in my life and the many ways they had dissapointed me. I distinctly remember feeling very low in that moment, and I felt what happened next was some kind of whisper from God in some way, I think to keep believing that good things are possible.
As the wheels of my car rolled up to pay the toll, the woman in the toll booth said to me happily ” The gentleman in front of you paid for you and wanted me to tell you to have a good night ”. It took me at least five minutes to comprehend what she said. My first thought was why? As I drove through the toll booth in bewiderment I began to look for this person to wave a thank you, and I noticed they had drove away quickly not looking for any kind of thanks.
As I continued on my long journey that night, I could not help but think about this person and his act of kindness. I kept trying to figure out why me? I think it was just this persons way of being kind for no other reason than kindness.
I remembered there was a time when I felt exactly the same way, and I did many things to be kind to others with no reason other than just being kind. Somewhere along the way, I became immersed in the ups and downs of my own life, and I forgot how to just be kind for no other reason other than kindness itself.
I decided in that moment to practice acts of kindness any time I could, not for any reason other than being kind. I remembered how good it actually feels to be kind or help someone in need.
I think as nice as I felt in that moment, this gentleman felt really good too knowing that he made a someone out in the world feel special with just a simple act of kindness.
Since that night I have learned to be more kind to others as I travel through my life. I just wanted to thank this gentleman for treating me kindly. I wish you many good things. You helped me to feel better, and you made me realize how important simple acts of kindness really are.
I hope to return the favor to others as the years go by, and I hope that all who read this will take the time to practice simple acts of kindness to help others feel better and in the process help yourself to feel wonderful.