Written by Cathy
Some people are experts at creating huge surprises, choosing extravagant gifts perfectly suited to their loved one, planning unique get-away adventures. They seem to intuitively know how to dazzle. I am probably not one of those gifted people. I appreciate their expertise, but I don’t think I have it in me. And truth be told, I am just more comfortable with small gestures-both those I extend to others, and those offered to me. I know we sometimes take those little pleasantries for granted, but I want to take a moment to recognize their impact, to pause and express appreciation for the civility of small kindnesses.
Last year I visited NYC during a street fair. As I was browsing in one of the stalls, I decided to purchase some hair accessories for little Chloe. Because the items were so carefully arranged, before I selected a headband , I asked the owner if I should take one from the display. His response has stayed with me. He said that he appreciated my thoughtfulness, and that I was the nicest person he had met all day. Can you imagine? I had recognized his efforts to create a lovely display, and he had given me this kind compliment. I think I smiled all day!
Rose wrote that she makes sure to tell her girls everyday that she loves them.(This after that horrendous commute!) How often we take our loved ones for granted, but that small gesture freely given brings their importance right back to the surface. I love you, I recognize your importance in my life, I’m glad you are here. In our family, we would call to each other from our bedrooms (kind of corny Walton style), “God bless you! Sleep tight, see you in the morning light!”
My husband makes me my coffee after dinner. And even though he drinks his coffee black, he will fix mine with cream and sugar (sometimes with a teasing sigh) and bring it to my chair. So what, you say? It’s that kind of little kindness that tells me I am significant to this one person.
The other morning John and I went to a small diner for breakfast. As we seated ourselves we both saw an elderly stranger in a booth alone. John called out to him,”Good morning! How are you?” His smile and greeting said it all. Hello in there. Hello.
When the grandkids visit, they always come bearing hugs and kisses. Even little Sylvie has her own endearing gesture. She crawls to me as fast as her little legs can carry her, raises herself up on one knee and extends her arms to me,”Gigi!” Can there be any present more special?
Kisses hello and good-bye, a filled gas tank, weekly phone calls, Sunday visits, crisply ironed dress shirts, home-made birthday cakes, big brother sharing a moment with little sisters, little sister squealing with glee when big brother emerges from school, daughter’s hand on mother’s shoulder, knowing grins, foot rubs. You can name your own little moments, all precious, all grand.