This Mom Couldn’t Afford To Buy A SLICE Of Birthday Cake For Her Son, So I Paid It Forward

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“I was at H-E-B, a supermarket here in Texas. I felt really bad for this young mom.

She had a baby and a little boy with her, and she was buying a SLICE of a birthday cake with a pack of candles. The total came up as $5.57. She started looking around and pulled out 2 dollars, and then started counting out change.

I heard her say aloud, ‘I just have to make sure I will still have $2 or so for gas.’

Her little boy replied, ‘It’s okay, mom. I don’t need a birthday cake. We just need gas so I can get to school.’ I could tell the mom felt completely defeated. She put back the candles. Everyone in line clearly heard and saw what was going on, but no one said anything.

I thought of my own mom. In the past, I’m positive that my mom struggled, but she never let it show.

Even as a struggling teen mom at just 16 years old, she shielded my brother and I from this. She is my inspiration for kindness.

Mom in blue blouse smiling next to daughter and son
Courtesy of Bianca Garibay

So, I grabbed the candles, a gift card for Target, and grabbed another gift card for gas. I walked outside and told her, ‘Ma’am, you dropped something.’

She says, ‘No, that’s not mine. I wish it was, but it’s not.’

I told her, ‘Yes, it’s yours. It’s yours because I got it for you. I want you to take this Target gift card and get your son a birthday present.”

I continued, “I want you to take this gift card and put gas in your car to fill the whole tank. I want you to take these candles. And when your son is about to blow them out, I want you to make a wish, too.’

I have never seen someone so grateful before in my life. That’s what’s wrong with the world today. Everyone has the ‘not my problem, not my business’ mindset.

Slowly, along the way, we have forgotten it takes a village to raise a child.

Mom in blue t shirt smiling next to son car seat
Courtesy of Bianca Garibay

After the exchange, I gave the woman my number and told her to let me know if she ever needs anything. I received this text later in the day, which made me so happy:

iPhone screenshot of thank you text message
Courtesy of Bianca Garibay

After I posted about the moving situation on Facebook, a lot of people replied saying they would like to help her for the upcoming holiday season. I’m planning to coordinate something for her, perhaps a P.O. box where everyone can send in items for little Jordan and his family.

Kindness to me is simply about putting others before yourself. Kindness is making the smallest gestures to make the biggest impact on someone’s life. Kindness is saying, ‘I’m here for you, even if you feel alone.’

Kindness is simply smiling at someone and letting them know you see them, even in this hectic world. It’s simply acknowledging your neighbor and letting them know you’re there. HAPPY 6th BIRTHDAY, JORDAN.”

Woman in denim button down smiling in driver's seat
Courtesy of Bianca Garibay

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Bianca Garibay of San Antonio, Texas. You can follow her journey on Facebook and Instagram. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.

Read more about amazing acts of kindness:

‘I’m really sorry for calling you names.’: Woman calms raging driver with kindness in touching moment

‘If you feel like no one believes in you, remember that I do.’: Single mom, abuse survivor graduates top of her nursing class thanks to nurse whose kindness saved her life

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