Go forth - Be Brave, Be Kind.
It was just a bottle of ginger ale, but I keep the memory of it in a very special room in my mind - the one that holds my small acts of bravery.
My mother passed away a few years ago now; One day, as I was leaving the hospital room where she spent an unfortunate part of her last years, I listened to a conversation taking place between a male nurse and the patient in the bed next to Mom's. That lady's illness had affected her personality and she had become very difficult to deal with. She was demanding a drink of ginger ale, which the poor nurse did not have access to. As I got into the elevator and headed downstairs, I heard that voice in my heart speaking up: "A ginger ale from the machine downstairs would make two people happy right now - that distressed patient, and the nurse who was trying to cope with more patients than he should have had to handle." I fought my way past the cowardly voice of 'It's not your problem, Edie', and for the minimal price of $1.00, I turned around and brought that struggling lady, and the surprised, grateful nurse a gift - a bright shiny bottle of ginger ale!
It takes courage to perform an act of kindness, even one as small as the gift of a bottle of ginger ale. The rewards go far beyond the immediate action - I can still feel the effervescent bubbles that welled up inside of me, causing me to thank God for allowing me to help someone even in this small way. They carried me, and made my footsteps a lot lighter than they had been when I left Mom's bedside - The real gift was actually given to me.
Borrowing a line from Cinderella's mother: 'Have courage and Be kind'!