Small acts of kindness make a big difference


photo via The Mariner’s Museum

7:00 P.M. Monday. First day after spring break. Starving and frustrated, I turn to the only possible refrain to my bad day: the hallowed fried goodness at Chick-fil-A. 


Arriving through the tight hairpin turn, the smooth pavement and recently renovated drive greeted my vehicle. I pulled into the drive-thru to a familiar face: Hoban senior Payton Gallant. Through differing schedules and the early year hybrid, I hadn’t seen her much. Beyond the typical Chick-fil-A customer experience, Payton made me feel as though our pandemic-induced distance was non-existent. Our brief conversation left me feeling welcomed, and on top of that it ended in an employee discount. 


This small gesture put my sandwich meal a few nickels and dimes over five bucks and made my day. It made me reflect on the role of small acts of kindness in our lives. 


After leaving the restaurant I decided that I would go and eat with an elderly relative who I hadn’t seen in awhile. We had a great dinner filled with laughter and good conversation. I can’t say that would’ve happened without Payton’s thoughtfulness. 


Small acts of kindness are like a pebble thrown into a still pond. When looking at the entirety of the pond the pebble seems miniscule, a component that cannot make a difference. However, it is only when the stone is dropped into the water that the far reaching ripples can be seen. Not only does this pebble touch where it lands, but everywhere around it. 


Likewise, when we make kind gestures, the expected impact may be small, but the ripple of goodness that follows can be unimaginable. 


Payton, thanks for the service and the discount. You’re AWESOME. For the rest of us, let’s try once a day to consciously do a kind act and see what world we can create together.