One day, when I was about 12 years old, I was walking the 20 minute walk home from school in the pouring rain. I was not dressed for the rain at all so I was extremely miserable. This was the kind of rain where you can barely see in front of you. It was disorienting. It was the kind of rain that makes you actually ask yourself "Can I drown walking down the street in the rain?" (Okay, maybe I was a very overly dramatic child, but it was bad nonetheless.)
All of a sudden a van pulled up next to me and a woman in the back seat opened the door and motioned me to come over.
Now, I paid close attention when my mom talked to me about "stranger danger" and told me repeatedly if I went with a stranger I would end up like in the Silence of the Lambs so I knew walking over to this van was not a good idea.
But my instincts were telling me it was okay. In fact, my intuition was telling me I needed to walk over for some reason. I looked around and decided there was enough cars driving by that I felt reasonably safe so I walked over to the sketchy van of strangers to see what they wanted. (Sorry Mom!)
My guard was definitely up as I slowly walked over. As I got closer I saw that the woman in the back seat had a box full of umbrellas. She pulled one out, handed it to me, closed the door and drove off.
I was in absolute shock. I can't remember if she said anything, I know I didn't say a word the entire time. I was too stunned, I was utterly speechless, I could not have formed a coherent sentence in my head if I tried. I feel bad that I didn't even thank her.
The message the universe was delivering to me that day was not lost on me. This was a time in my life where I was going through a lot and was feeling bitter, angry and cynical. I was starting to see the worst in people and was started to really believe that most people were bad and that the world was nothing but darkness. But this changed EVERYTHING! I knew in my heart and soul that this was the universe proving to me that most people are good. Most people in the world have good and loving hearts.
The knowledge of this and the experience of receiving this message was life changing. This truth would carry me through life. This completely restored my faith in humanity. A faith that I've never lost since.
Of course we can't deny there are bad and dangerous people in the world, with bad intentions and we absolutely need to follow our intuition and protect ourselves from these darker souls but not every person we encounter is bad, far from it!
We're constantly hearing all the negative stories, all the bad things that are happening in the world and because of this we start to truly believe that this is an accurate representation of what's going on in the world. But it's not the whole picture.
We don't hear all the positive stories because they're not as dramatic and "exciting" as the bad stories so the media rarely covers them as their bottom line is ratings. A person living a good, honest life, that works hard, takes good care of their family, recycles, and is kind to others is not a very exciting story but that does not mean that this person isn't contributing to a massive positive shift in the world.
I think so many of us are living in fear. We're so guarded and constantly protecting ourselves that we sometimes miss these acts of kindness that the universe wants to send us.
I'm not saying some of these fears aren't completely valid. We have to be honest and talk about what we're afraid of and work towards solutions, but when we live in fear, we disconnect from our intuitive selves, our higher selves. We see the possibility of danger constantly and are living in fear rather than trusting that if danger comes our way we have phenomenal survival instincts that we can trust. We don't need to constantly be living in fear.
What I am suggesting is that we release some of this fear (both collectively and on a personal level). We don't need it to survive. It doesn't even really protect us. We're better fit to handle danger if we are level headed and clear and not caught up in the negative emotion of fear. We are actually stronger and safer when we aren't scared and jittery. We need to be connected to our intuition, our instincts that are designed to protect us.
It's incredible how powerful a random act of kindness can be. Something so small can literally change someone's life for the better. If we all started looking for the opportunities for us to touch other people's lives with acts of kindness we would be so much less fearful, less judgmental and guarded. We could connect with people on a deeper level and see their good that we might otherwise never see. We would trust people in our communities more and be able to more effectively work together to solve the problems that need to be solved. The ripple affects of these acts of kindness are what will ultimately heal the world. If we all search for opportunities to make a difference we will.
I still feel badly that I never said thank you to this angel that touched my life. I also believe in fate so if you're reading this somehow and it was you that encountered a young girl with really bad bangs in about 1999/2000 on Rice Avenue in Hamilton, Ontario....THANK YOU! I cannot begin to thank you enough. Your small act of kindness to a total stranger was one of the most powerful and memorable experiences of my life. Thank you for caring, thank you for making the effort and thank you for restoring my faith in humanity.