This time last year, a kindly gentleman rescued me at a busy check-out and his Random Act of Christmas still echoes in my heart to this day.
So this year, I wanted to commit a Random Act of Christmas of my own and pay forward the kindness that was shown to me that hectic morning.
I could never have guessed what would happen next…
Before the arrival of baby number 1, we spent months researching prams to find this one – the ‘creme dela creme’ of prams, we called it. Retailing at nearly $1,000 brand new, it was perfect. We loved it. We made many memories with our boys in that pram – trips to the zoo, shopping adventures, strolls through our neighbourhood. But our two boys have sworn off our beloved pram for some time now. Much preferring to run around my legs like ballistic missiles than be strapped into a seat. So, feeling nostalgic and a little teary, I listed it on Gumtree.
Within seconds, a text came in: ‘I’m desperately in need of a double pram! I’m a single mum of a 1 and 2 year old and my pram just died!’
We arranged to meet and the exchange pram and money.
As I pulled up out the front of her dilapidated home, I knew what I had to do.
My boys jumped out of the car with me and we gave her a full demonstration of the pram – set up, pack up, brakes, seat recline options… She watched on, excited, money in hand.
‘So, there it is!’ I declared.
‘Thank you so much! I’ve been looking for a pram for weeks and couldn’t afford one. You have no idea what this means to me,’ she said, holding out her money.
I smiled in return and said: ‘Consider it a Christmas gift.’
‘No, no. I’ve even got fuel money here to pay you,’ she cried, confused.
I started packing my kids into the car.
‘I will never forget this. I’m going to pay it forward one day… when I can,’ her lips were trembling.
‘I know you will. I know you will,’ I said, quietly.
Later that evening as I was getting into bed a text came through and I could barely read the words through my tears…
‘Hey Annette, I just want to say thank you so much for the pram. I absolutely love it. My kids love it too! I’ve had a really rough time and been struggling as a newly single mum with no support or family and you’ve lifted my spirits tremendously! Nothing like this has ever happened to me before and I feel truly blessed and touched by what you have done for me. I was so shocked after you left I cried! (happy tears) Your kind gesture couldn’t have been better timing. I’ve taken the kids out for a lovely long walk this afternoon, thinking the whole time how grateful I am. You’ve made my year! Thank you from the bottom of my heart and I’ll never forget this lovely gesture that you’ve done for my children and I. I wish you a very Merry Christmas to you and your family.’
A simple, random act of Christmas can deliver hope to someone who feels hopeless. I’m not telling this story to brag, but rather to inspire. I don’t know why, but random acts of kindness take on a deeper significance at this time of year. Perhaps it’s because the financial and emotional strain on families is stronger than ever at Christmas time.
Something as simple as giving flowers to a frazzled mother, in the grip of a toddler tantrum while Christmas shopping can lift the weight of the world off her shoulders. So, this Christmas, let’s all look for opportunities to bless someone who needs a little bit of light and life and hope.
Find out more at randomactsofchristmas.co