Recommended Reading Soundtrack: Stand By Me by Otis Redding on Album Pain in my Heart
Feeling grumpy, crotchety, stubborn or a bit sequestered today? Get ready, because that is about to change, I promise! In pondering the significance of kindness in my life, as blogger Erica has challenged our community this week, I am finding myself deeply grateful for this opportunity to talk about the beauty of the human spirit. It is a place in our hearts that always draws us together, even when we think those words are cliché or just a bunch of hooey!
My mind stores up moments of kindness like a big jar of peanut M&Ms that teachers tempt kids with through a guessing game of how many are harbored within that glass. They are colorful, sweet and have the added bonus of not rotting our teeth. And I digress. Then I came across an awesome story on the Washington Post by Sarah Larimer and Casey Capachi titled “Today in uplifting internet news: Redditors help father who lost his infant daughter.” The story was like an envelope being opened on stage for Best Motion Picture at the Oscars and given the chance, I couldn’t help myself but open it. I didn’t even question opening it, as of course I have limited views on news stories here, seriously!
The story- a 26 year old father who recently lost his newborn named, Sophia. One of the few pictures he had of her with open eyes and alertness in tow was also full of her evident struggle to survive- hospital equipment. As the tears started pouring, my eyes and breath strained to read more of the story about a shooting star that flew across our sky for only a brief moment. He submitted this one picture to Reddit and asked if anyone could Photoshop out the tubes to create a memory that would survive for him and the mother.
“Since she was in the hospital her whole life we never were able to get a photo without all her tubes. Can someone remove the tubes from this photo?” Wrote the 26 year old father named Nathen Steffel
The father didn’t only receive a beautiful, single edited photo, he received thousands of messages and also some mailed presents containing drawings, even an embroidered blanket. This story is a beautiful representation of our capacity to love and how one request can be an opportunity for thousands of people to respond in kindness and appreciation for the preciousness of life and how it affects us.
The people that responded saw these parents’ pain in their own experiences. They saw themselves and wanted to give comfort and love. Beautiful compassion for the human experience that we all endure every day of both living and passing away. And I leave this blog post with one thing- thank you, Sophia, for gracing our world with this beautiful opportunity to remember how fleeting and luminous our lives are. Your kindness will help me remember to not lose sight of what is important in this world, how we choose to live our lives and “pay it forward.”
At the end of one of my favorite films, Scrooged, Bill Murray’s character gave a speech that no matter what, always made me crave more. I would sit up at night, even in the summer, and replay this one scene just to see the son of his assistant who had stopped talking since witnessing his father’s death, to say one thing, “And God Bless Us Everyone.” If you have time today, check out this article and re-watch the scene in Scrooged (Click Here!). Remember, “If you give, then it can happen, then the miracle can happen to you.”
Let’s Rock Big Love!