There is no end to kindness. It can be found in the still of the morning, when the birds are trilling and sipping from a freshly filled bath. In the newly planted herbs and the hints of green pushing upwards out of dark, rich soil, seeking sunshine and warmth. The unconditional returns of someone’s sowing. Kindness can be discovered in small gifts of jam left nestled by the front door and in unexpected invitations to life experiences. It can be found in a shared umbrella mid downpour and present in a photo, even one sent at five a.m., of a friend’s twins born half way around the world.
Kindness is in the vacated seat, the opened door, the prepaid coffee. It is in the stoop of the old man who leaves five dollars in a rusty old soup can. Kindness is the thank you note, the phone call, the late night conversation. Kindness is being considered an Aunty, regardless of the lack of blood ties.
From the moment the sun rises, until it sets, there is a perpetual cycle of kindness in action. With the baton picked up in the relay of timezones across the globe.
When I started this challenge I had no doubt about the existence of kindness, only a desire to understand it more deeply. I wanted to break away from the cliches that we have wrapped ourselves in and find my way to the heart of the matter. I wanted to act consciously, mindfully, with deliberation and careful intent. I wanted to connect with my capacity for kindness.
What I didn’t expect was that kindness also wanted to connect with me.
I had never stopped to consider kindness as something other than an external ‘concept’. The existence of which relies entirely on someone putting it into effect. But as each week passed, I began to feel that there was something greater at play. That kindness was in fact a living, breathing entity, carried in our essence. That in some way, we were sharing our bodies with kindness, that it was a part of this aspect we call our soul.
The more I accepted that kindness was an irrefutable part of who I am, of who we all are, the more kindness revealed itself to me. And the more I understood that when expressed, kindness is a representation of all that is good and whole in this world. That it is the flag of hope fluttering with dauntless joy in the midst of a storm.
And I understood, that kindness is everywhere. It is in the act of picking up the scarf your colleague dropped. In holding the elevator door. It is in the compliment and the shared meal. It is in wildlife rescues and homemade soup. Kindness is in remembering the day a friend’s parent died, as well that friend’s birthday. Kindness is saying ‘yes’, in a culture that advocates saying ‘no’. It is standing outside your own comfort zone to allow someone else to find their own. But above all, kindness is about the willingness to connect.
The four weeks might have ended, but the challenge has only just begun. Live Kindly x
Linking up With Some Grace