“When I see someone drop money on the floor, I go to help them pick it up. When someone is struggling with the door, I go to open it for them. When someone gives me way in traffic, I give them a wave. When someone makes small talk with me, I’m extra weird and see their opening and I make small talk back and then some. I try to make them feel comfortable and I overcompensate.
I smile at strangers.
I ask the check-out girl how her day’s really going.
And I’m polite.
Today I wasn’t. Today I was in my own world. I was quiet. I sat at the hairdresser’s and made minimal talk with too much on my mind and my hand glued to my phone. I didn’t make small talk. I didn’t hold the door open. I walked past someone picking up coins, and I didn’t wave when someone gave me way and saw them mouth ‘b*tch’.
I probably looked rude, right?
But that’s okay because no one would have known what was going on inside for me. I wasn’t wearing a sticker that said, ‘Sorry I’m having a bad day, promise I’m not a jerk.’
And that’s the thing. We don’t know, do we?
Maybe the check-out girl who gave me a dirty look when I made small talk just got told it was her last shift.
Maybe the person who didn’t thank me for helping pick up their coins, dropped them because they got some bad news and didn’t even know I was there.
Maybe the person I gave way to, didn’t wave back because they were driving to a funeral, and didn’t even think about me.
Maybe the person who doesn’t hold the door open for you is struggling with their relationship.
And maybe they’re the nicest person in the world, but are just having a bad day.
No one is wearing stickers to say what they are going through. Sometimes you can see it in their face, but the reality is, most people are experts at hiding it. People have bad days, not everyone is a jerk and perhaps they just need to know that there is someone else out there that won’t make them feel like one, for not being their usual self.
We all fight battles that no one knows about. Some are great at hiding it and some just show it in different ways, but no one has a sticker that says, ‘I need kindnesses.’
But we all do.”
Read more from Laura:
Provide beauty and strength for others. SHARE this story on Facebook with your friends and family.