Kindness


Moment hike

“Be kind-everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”.

Annie at the Gentle Kindness Blog recently wrote this post which reminded me immediately of an incident in my life. I felt inspired to share it here even though it may be “off topic” of my usual blogging. But this blog tends to get “off topic” so…

A little story about how we never know what someone is facing in their life, what their battle is, what they are on their way to face.

My story, I’ll try to make it quick. Many years ago, my mom passed away unexpectedly, shocking, horrifying. I flew home for the funeral. I was in a state of shock and terribly grieving. I was literally DRIVING TO THE FUNERAL. I made a minor mistake driving and sat through a green light too long. The person behind me, literally, road raged on me. Got out of his car and started yelling at me. I couldn’t believe it. I got out of my car and started screaming like a mad woman in the middle of the street that “my mom just died and I’m on my way to her #@%# funeral, you #@!& (jerk)!”. I was screaming and crying and shocked that someone could road rage like that. Something so small (missing a traffic light) versus something so big (grasping the death of my mom). I don’t remember a whole lot more of the incident as I was in a daze and a rage myself. I just know that after getting back in my car and pulling into a parking lot to cool down…that -THAT MAN-he did not follow me, he drove on, on with his day, on with his life… and I hope he thinks twice the next time he wants to be mean, unforgiving and cruel to someone. “You never know the battle they are facing”. You never know if they are on their way to their mom’s funeral. Thank you to Gentle Kindness Blog for reminding me of this powerful incident in my life. I wish to try to live my life always telling myself that I never know where “that person” is driving to, who they may have lost in their life, where their grief may be, what “battle they may be facing” and I will hopefully remember to show strangers grace as I cross their paths in this world.

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24 thoughts on “Kindness

  1. I agree the guy should not have raged at you, but I do find your dismissal of missing the light as being something so small to be a little shocking. I saw someone get killed because someone missed a light once. I myself have to work on my own temper behind the wheel (usually shouting a word or flipping the bird) so I appreciate your post as we all make mistakes, I just take issue with it being small in your mind.

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    • Humm…I must admit your comment gave me pause. I had to think about it for a minute. I should clarify perhaps that I was writing that post from some place in my mind at the time of the incident-as in, how could “this” be more important than “that”?! After reading your comment and thinking about it, I really think you may have a point… how do I know anything about that man? Perhaps he was on his way to something of great importance as well and my rudeness and distraction was painful to him. Interesting. I’m looking at the story in a different light now, looking at it from a sense of… maybe… his eyes.

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      • I agree that either way, rudeness is not the answer, it just sounded like you were downplaying the significance of the mistake. I admire your ability to think from other perspectives, and I think the spirit of the post still rings true, even if the clarification was necessary.

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  2. Fortunately I have never experienced road rage or been the receiver of it. What makes me sad here is that when you told the man, he didn’t apologize for his anger. One word,…. sorry… can mean a lot.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Interesting article. Yes, we can always look at things through the eyes of the other person. It is not easy to do when you are in pain, anger, and closed in your own grief. Only the most saint person can go past the grief and hurt and look a the world through many eyes. Thank you for sharing!

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  4. I think that’s a really good reminder to try to take a wider view of the world than just our own bubble. I’m also a little curious as to how missing a green light is more than a little mistake – perhaps it’s a different in road layout or signals but in the UK if you don’t go at the green on a traffic light the traffic just doesn’t move – everyone starts beeping their horns but that’s about as much as it gets. I’d have classed it a minor error too.

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    • I agree. I don’t think it’s a big thing either. I think maybe what he meant was that it can be serious in terms of people actually getting shot for stuff like this. Totally crazy! I’ve never experienced it before. Thanks for your comment!

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  5. Oh my goodness. I have lived this in so many ways over the past few years. I have to remember that we are all going through something, and depending on how I react towards them will help their days be better or worse. Kindness changes lives. Thank you for sharing.

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  6. Thank you for sharing your story. It made me cry! My mother also died unexpectedly and suddenly (a car accident), and so I could relate to your experience. The thought of driving to the funeral and having someone attack you with road rage…I just can’t imagine how disturbing that must have been.
    A good reminder to show grace and kindness to all. We do not know what burdens they care, where they are going, or what they have to face next. Thank you.

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