It’s only been four days since the loss of 26 lives made our world both a little quieter and a little louder all at the same time. And, I still don’t know what to do about it. I could get back to blogging as usual. I could go on with my holiday shopping as usual. I could do those things while promising not to forget. But, that just doesn’t seem like enough. It’s not enough, because while I get back to business as usual, my heart and mind are still with that little town in Connecticut, and I realize that I don’t want to get back to business as usual.
Maybe because it’s the holiday season. Maybe it’s because i’m finding it tough to feel that festive spirit. Maybe it’s because talking about recipes, and posting silly pictures of my cats, and spending a bunch of money on gifts, all just feels a little hollow. Maybe it’s because these horrible crimes against our littlest angels has made me realize that kindness, hope, goodwill, and love are really what matter most in this world.
I don’t want to think about, or remember the people who took 28 lives last week (26 at Sandy Hook, and 2 back home in Clackamas, OR), but I do want to remember the twenty-eight lives that were lost. And I want to do it in a way that feels meaningful. So what can I do? Twenty-eight random acts of kindness, that’s what. I can’t hug the families that lost loved ones. I can’t fly to Connecticut and participate in candlelight vigils for the lives lost. But, I can do twenty-eight nice things for twenty-eight random strangers in their memory. It’s not enough. But, it’s something.
It appears that Ann Curry started this with a tweet that has taken over social media. #20Acts, #26Acts, #26actsofkindness all trending now on Twitter, and all full of people from across the world who feel the need to do something. The idea is this: Go out and do good in the world. Commit one random act of kindness in the memory of every life lost.
I’m in. What better way to try to find that festive spirit? What better way to remember the loss of life? What better way then to put a little kindness and love back into a world that sorely needs it? So, I will be committing myself to twenty-eight random acts of kindness. Here is a link to some of the random acts this “movement” has inspired. As you can see, they don’t have to be big, or expensive, or cost anything at all. They just have to be kind.
I hope you help spread the love too (even if it’s just one act of kindness you can commit to). I hope it helps you remember those lost in a way that makes your heart joyful instead of sorrowful. And mostly, I hope it helps you and your family feel and remember the true meaning of Christmas. But, I also hope it reminds you that it shouldn’t take awful, gut wrenching tragedies to remind us to be kind to our neighbors, our community, and our world.